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Park Along the River improvements to produce ‘century ride’

Improvements are currently underway at the Park Along the River for area walking and cycling enthusiasts. Construction will include new lighting and lengthened track space.
 
The lighting improvements will include an additional 24 new street lights along the street leading from West Bankhead to the tennis complex located just a few hundred yards west of the hiking and cycling trail.
This sign marks the west Bankhead entrance to the tennis complex.

This sign marks the west
Bankhead entrance to the tennis complex.

NALGW truck using an earth drill attachment to drive the base of one of the light standards deep into the ground.

NALGW truck using an earth drill attachment to drive the base of one of the light standards deep into the ground.

NALGW workers Marty Baker and Mathew Gooch removing the earth drill attachment from the actual light pole base.

NALGW workers Marty Baker and Mathew Gooch removing the earth drill attachment from the actual light pole base.

The walking track will eventually encircle the lake near highway 78. This renovation will add about a quarter-mile to the existing track, making the distance from the footbridge over the river to the Sportsplex about 1.25miles each way.
The new section of pavement will be 10 feet wide, which is consistent with the current width of the Tanglefoot Trail. Portions of the existing track will be raised several inches so they will not be flooded during heavy rain. When the park was constructed two decades ago, a great many trees were buried under what is now the hiking and cycling trail. As the wood in the trees has rotted and broken down over the years, portions of the trail have lost several inches of elevation, allowing water to stand after heavy rains.
PATR Improvements 31JUL2015 027
PATR Improvements 31JUL2015 016
 New paved section will connect with Tanglefoot Trail.

New paved section will connect with Tanglefoot Trail.

This section of paved track will eventually join the Tanglefoot Trail. This area will be joined with the track to be built on the three-mile long corridor recently given to the city by the John Young family, making the Tanglefoot a “century ride.” This means, for those who are in it for the long haul, a round trip on the trail, starting in New Albany and following the trail on the old railroad right of way all the way to Houston, MS, will total at least 100 miles.
A blue heron fishing in the river, about halfway between the footbridge over the river near downtown and the Highway 78 double bridge.

A blue heron fishing in the river, about halfway between the footbridge over the river near downtown and the Highway 78 double bridge.

 For more information on the Young family donation: See NAnewsweb story.
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