Brookfield bikers will, in a couple years, be able to use four new miles of path that will not only offer a quick, uninterrupted connection to Frame Park in Waukesha, but also open up connections to hundreds of miles of other routes.
The new project is made possible by an award of over $2.5 million to Waukesha County for the project. The $2.5 million is the largest chunk awarded from a $13 million increase in funding for the Wisconsin Department of Transportation's transportation alternatives program.
The trail will connect Frame Park in the city of Waukesha to the business district on Brookfield Road.
"This trail has been on the county's bike trail plan for a number of years," Waukesha County Director of Parks and Land Use Dale Shaver said. "We introduced it last year for the first time to the county board, but it was contingent on receiving these funds."
More than requested
Shaver noted that the award from the DOT is not only the largest to any of the program's 27 projects, but is also even slightly more than the county had hoped for.
"It was a little more than we were expecting. Our initial application was for $2.3 million," Shaver said. "I think the DOT was a little concerned about some of the detail on the design side, so they increased it."
The timeline for the project would have the county begin design work next year with construction taking place in 2016-17. Shaver says that the trail will be finished sometime in 2017, but did not want to speculate on a more specific date.
Cyclists, joggers, and walkers alike from Brookfield can look forward to not only the new trail itself, but also a number of new routes that will become more accessible by virtue of this project.
"We're excited about the potential of this trail, as well as it making this important connection and linkage to not only Waukesha, but the overall regional and state trail system," City of Brookfield Director of Parks, Recreation & Forestry Bill Kolstad said. "It was always envisioned to make a connection with this important county trail as part of our Greenway Trail System."
Shaver noted that the new trail will not only connect Frame Park and Brookfield Road, but also many subdivisions and neighborhoods in between.
"The entry points are numerous, so along the way there are a number of subdivisions and certainly the county's Fox Brook Park on Barker Road," Shaver said. "What's nice about this is that people can connect from their subdivisions right onto the trail."
In addition to the $2,532,984 awarded, the county will spend $196,500 on the trail and the city of Brookfield will contribute around $146,000.
The transportation Alternatives program has funded bike trails throughout the state, including in much of southeastern Wisconsin for trail improvements, community bike programs, and other objectives that provide alternative methods of transportation.
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