MESSAGE FROM THE MAYOR

Mayor Tom HenryCONNECTING FORT WAYNE-TRAILS, BIKE LANES AND SIDEWALKS PLANNED FOR WAYNEDALE

As the City’s system of bike paths and trails keeps expanding, I want to assure Waynedale residents that we do have plans to bring “active transportation” projects to you! Active transportation is a term that refers to making walking and bicycling viable options for everyday travel. By increasing active transportation opportunities, we hope to provide more and better choices for getting around, reduce dependence on cars and gasoline and help residents stay more active and fit.

The City of Fort Wayne along with trail, bike and sidewalk advocates are working on an Active Transportation Plan for Fort Wayne, which includes the adopted Bike Fort Wayne Plan, the soon-to-be adopted Walk Fort Wayne Plan and the future Trails Fort Wayne Plan. We have identified many future active transportation projects for the Waynedale area that will provide for greater connectivity within Waynedale and to the larger Fort Wayne area and provide for safer travel for walkers, runners and bicyclists in Waynedale.

Bike Fort Wayne outlines plans for an on-street bikeway, or bike lane, on Bluffton Road and Lower Huntington Road. Both projects were identified by the plan, which utilized public input, as mid-range priorities within the Fort Wayne bikeway network. The goal is to get started on these two projects in the next seven years. Funding for these projects has not yet been established.

The Walk Fort Wayne Plan identifies a trail along the east side of Bluffton Road between Liberty Drive and Engle Road as a high priority. This trail would connect with Foster Park and with the 24-mile Rivergreenway and 61-mile Fort Wayne Trails network. The Walk Fort Wayne Plan also identifies a sidewalk on the east side of Bluffton Road between Dale Drive and Maplewood Drive as a near-term priority. Funding for these projects has not been identified.

In terms of multi-use trails, the City is currently examining a connection from the sidewalk along Lower Huntington Road to the Rivergreenway at Tillman Park. The Northeastern Indiana Regional Coordinating Council’s (NIRCC’s) 2030 Bike-Pedestrian Transportation Plan identifies several trail projects in the Waynedale area. One is an 80-mile State Visionary Trail, which will start in Pokagon State Park in Angola and end in Ouabache State Park in Bluffton. This trail will travel through the Waynedale area along Bluffton Road. Another trail identified in the Waynedale area is a trail along Ardmore Avenue. In fact, a segment of this trail in Waynedale was constructed several years ago between Lower Huntington Road and Airport Expressway. The entire NIRCC 2030 Bike-Pedestrian Transportation Plan can be viewed at www.nircc.com.

Fort Wayne’s Greenways Manager is Dawn Ritchie. You may contact her at 427-6002 or dawn.ritchie@cityoffortwayne.org or contact my office to talk about the future of our trail system.

Tom Henry - Fort Wayne Mayor

A lifelong Fort Wayne resident, Mayor Thomas C. Henry is committed to public and community service. He was elected to his first term as Fort Wayne's Mayor November 6, 2007. Mayor Henry authors the "Message from the Mayor" column. > Read Full Biography > More Articles Written By This Writer