OK, settle down, I know an open beer line usually means you can get to the bar at a crowded Friday night fish fry. This time it means a new segment of paved trail is open from where Riverboat Road ends (under the North Ave Bridge) up past the UWM dorms and into Gordon Park.
This new trail is less than a mile long, but it is a key connection from the existing Beerline trail which uses the wide sidewalk along Commerce St.
Yes, many of us have enjoyed riding the old gravel trail for years, ducking under low branches and pedaling through puddles. But I have to say, the newly paved and landscaped trail is sooooo nice!
The trail was long in the making because it involved a pretty complicated land deal between the River Revitalization Foundation, the County and UWM. The City has had its section done at the end of Riverboat Rd for a long time. The connection from the UWM dorms to the trail still has to be paved. For some reason that connection was not on the original plans, so they could not do a change order to add the paving to this project. I was told they are working out the details to get that little section paved.
I received a pretty good suggestion at the grand opening last night. A citizen asked if the City would put up signs along Commerce St. to let people know that it is legal to ride a bicycle on that wide sidewalk. I agreed to work with the River Revitalization Foundation and our City sign department to get some signs up. We also need to add a curb ramp from the sidewalk to the street where Riverboat Road intersects with Commerce Street.
Even though this is just a short new trail, it is a great new connection for people on bicycles as well as pedestrians. It also connects to the soft trails along the Milwaukee River. I strongly encourage you to take the time to ride it and explore a bit.