He suggested the Greenway board consider a route along the tributary of Mouse Creek which flows under North Ocoee Street through the old Church of God of Prophecy assembly parking lots and beside Keith Street Church to connect with the Greenway in Tinsley Park by going under Keith Street. He listed several reasons why he feels this could be a feasible extension of the system (in his words):
- There are quite a few employees located within the Athens Federal Building, many who like to walk during lunch and breaks. For example, I have been told by co-workers that a large contingent of Wacker employees (located on the third floor) walk to the BI-LO plaza when the weather is nice. I have only been at this location for six weeks or so, but I have seen Olin employees walking around the parking lot and out toward BI-LO (me included). An extension to the Greenway would make it possible to do a long lunch walk, or an after-work urban hike.
- There are also many other employees in the area — First National Bank, the new First Tennessee Bank and others.
- There are few property owners affected and they should all be amenable to the idea.
- Much of the right of way is not able to be developed since it is in a flood plain.
- There is already some infrastructure in place. There is a pedestrian bridge across the creek at one point if the walkway needed to change sides of the creek. And a parking lot would also probably be pretty easy, given the old Assembly lots.
- Although the mileage wouldn’t be huge, it would add a significant little section to the existing four miles.
In an email back, I was able to share that this great idea has, and will continue to be, pursued. In fact, a grant has already been submitted by the city of Cleveland. Unfortunately, it was turned down primarily because at the time Phase 5 of the Greenway was still under construction.
I was pleased to read this suggestion, as it showed that people are thinking ahead to how we can expand and improve the Greenway. There can be several ways to extend the current Greenway and it doesn’t necessarily have to be adding on to the north (Mohawk Drive) or south (Willow Street) ends. We are always looking for feasible ways to connect more neighborhoods.
If you have an observation or idea, please share it with us by writing to firstname.lastname@example.org. Nothing is off limits and no suggestion is too outlandish. I can promise that they will all be read and given consideration. And who knows? They may end up in this column.