Great Parks of Hamilton County has started construction of the final extension and most significant section of the Little Miami Scenic Trail.
Known as the Beechmont Bridge Connector, this complex half-mile stretch will connect the existing Little Miami Scenic Trail terminus (near State Route 32 and Beechmont) with the Otto Armleder Memorial Park-to-Lunken Trail, and the future Elstun Road Connector. The extension will allow trail users for the first time to safely travel from the Little Miami Scenic Trail to the Ohio River Trail.
“This last, critical piece of the Little Miami Scenic Trail will link hundreds of thousands of people to more recreation, entertainment, and business opportunities, plus many parks and preserves throughout Southwest Ohio,” said Todd Palmeter, CEO of Great Parks. “The public identified this regional trail as a priority in our Comprehensive Master Plan, and I’m looking forward to the day when people will use this segment to enjoy one of the most expansive and interlinked trail systems in the state.”
The Little Miami Scenic Trail is already one of the longest paved, multi-use trails in the United States, stretching 78 miles from Springfield, Ohio to Anderson Township. Traveling on the trail from the Lunken Loop, the Beechmont Bridge Connector will connect to the Armleder-to-Lunken Trail just east of Reeves Golf Course. It will then cross over the Little Miami River on a new bridge extension adjacent to, but physically separated from, the eastbound lane of the Beechmont Avenue Bridge. The trail will turn north under Beechmont Avenue and pass through a new tunnel under the State Route 32 westbound ramp to Beechmont Avenue, where it will connect to the Little Miami Scenic Trail.
“This long-awaited connection will provide a safe route for cyclists and will bridge the gap for all trail users to help achieve our vision for the CROWN 34-mile urban loop,” said Wade Johnston, director of Tri-State Trails, an initiative of Green Umbrella. “We’re thankful that Great Parks is playing a leading role in expanding this high use trail that serves as a recreation and transportation system for residents in the area.”
A groundbreaking celebration scheduled for Monday, March 8, at 10:30 a.m. has been POSTPONED due to flooding and its aftermath.
Great Parks secured 100% of the funding for the $7.9 million project, including 27% from Great Parks’ capital project funds as a local match for state capital and federal (CMAQ) funding. The design and engineering were facilitated by the City of Cincinnati Department of Transportation and Engineering in collaboration with Great Parks and the Ohio Department of Transportation. Bidding and construction are being managed by the Ohio Department of Transportation with the project scheduled to begin in March 2021. The project is expected to be completed by late summer to early fall of 2022.
All construction-related impacts to trail accessibility will be posted online.