Strasburg asks for ideas on U.S. 11 trail

Strasburg residents can give their input to town officials Wednesday on a trail proposed to run along U.S. 11 to Food Lion.

The Gateway Trail is planned as a pedestrian trail network that will connect the commercial district around the U.S. 11 (Old Valley Pike) interchange with the downtown area and residential neighborhoods along the highway. The first segment of the trail will connect the existing sidewalk on North Massanutten Street to the Food Lion shopping center.

The trail steering committee and design team will hold the meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday in Town Hall, 174 E. King St., to solicit input from the public on the project.

Pedestrians and bicyclists now use a footpath or straddle the roadside to travel along the busy highway to and from work, home or shopping destinations.

Strasburg and the Virginia Department of Transportation will split the cost of the project.

Town Council awarded a contract late last year to Charlottesville-based Line+Grade to design the project for just under $120,000. Line+Grade presented a proposed design to council in December. The town’s budget includes $60,000 to cover its share of the design cost.

Early estimates put the cost to build the trail at about $1 million, though the price could change depending on the bids submitted by firms seeking to construct the project. Some survey work and a geotechnical study of the soils along the possible route has already been done.

The Strasburg Community Plan 2012 recommends the construction of sidewalks and trails around the town to give pedestrians a safer option for walking. Town Council allocated money in the fiscal 2013 budget to pay for survey work on the project. The fiscal 2015 budget includes money for the design of the project.

Visit http://tiny.cc/vmk9px for more information about the Gateway Trail project.