I thought it was more recent, but it was way back in January that I mentioned three area bike trails would be getting a little longer. A couple of weeks ago, I paid a visit to one in Clovis, to see if anything had happened; it had, and construction was done.
The location is Cottonwood Park, in Clovis, which is part of the Dry Creek Trail. The existing trail had a gap where one had to use a segment of sidewalk, which had no signage indicating where the trail picked up again.
I guessed that a path would be built diagonally across the park, to the intersection. I was right.
Let’s start where the old trail was (at the bottom right of the water pong in the image above). You can see the existing trail was asphalt, and the new one is concrete. The new trail curves left, the old trail remains and continues straight/right. Also note the light: the old trail had no lighting. Note that lighting was only added to the new section.
This is looking at the same area, but backwards (ie, towards where I was standing for the last picture)
And this is at the junction. That entire viewing area straight ahead? Brand new.
Some attention to design
Shame the fence is so far away from the water.
The path itself is smooth, wide and has lighting, but I’m not a fan of the curves. Do they look nice? I guess. But if you’re using this trail for transportation, then they’re simply a pain in the ass. Not everyone is here for 5mph recreation. I do like the placement of lights, not too far apart.
New benches were added as well
We near the intersection
Water fountains were added for people and pets
A new gateway was added to match the existing one across the street. Now it’s obvious where the trail is, unlike before when you had to know where to go.
But one massive problem: No improvements to the intersection. The shortest, and most logical, crossing is straight. But in Clovis, automobiles get full priority, so anyone using the trail must make two long crossings, essentially making crossing the road a 3-5 minute exercise. Even though the trail is active, if the button isn’t pushed, the pedestrian signals dont indicate one can cross.
The ramp also sends people straight into the intersection, dangerous for the blind.
Crossing involves going backwards, due to the diagonal orientation of the crossing. The button is not oriented with the ramp at all.
One can cross either way, but the crosswalks are blocked by concrete medians
Wouldn’t going straight be so much better?
This was the old trail, not signed.
One thing I did like. This picture is taken down the street, the stop light is where the last pictures were taken. Note the path on the right…. a direct sidewalk was added to the trail, so people don’t have to walk in the grass or go all the way to the corner to access it.
It was very exciting to see that construction happened so quickly, and it was of high quality. Lights, concrete, and amenities make it obvious someone is taking this trail seriously….for recreation anyway. The unimproved crossing and curves make it obvious that those in charge still don’t see this as a transportation option, which it is.
Now, why can’t they fix the old town gap? As far as gaps go, that one is much more serious.