Wednesday, November 16, 2011

River Bluffs Segment Video (Updated)

Metroplan's video rendering of the River Bluffs segment of the River Trail is on the Youtube now (and has been for a month, though I'm only now discovering it (thanks JBar)).

That's great stuff for sure. The current trail traverses about a mile of steep hills, narrow and twisty sidewalks, gravel-strewn turns, and one-way roads in the wrong direction. The city has an application in with the feds for partial funding. Let's hope that it comes through, because there's no way we could afford this locally. I know it's going to be hella expensive, but it's a vital part of the trail and the final missing link. Based on the video, it should also be the highlight of the loop. Is it too late the make it 16 or even 18 feet wide?! :)

Two questions that I have:
1. Where's the trail access to Dillard's hq, the Packett House, and the Dillard's data center going to be? The rendering makes it appear that the security/retaining/counterbalance wall will be continuous there with no openings. Surely the final design provides easy and convenient access to those places, right?
2. In the closing frame there's a new building on the far right. Is that a clue that the condo project near the old West Marine site is getting closer to fruition? Here's hoping that the developer puts a coffee and/or bike shop on the ground floor right by the trail.

[Update]: Here's what the city said regarding access to Dillard's, etc:"That is an issue we are still working through.  Of course you will obviously be able to access it from either end as well as from Cantrell at Baring Cross.  We have had some very preliminary discussions with one of the land owners about access from their property.  At this point the alternative access is still a work in progress."

Why a land/business owner wouldn't welcome something like this with open arms is beyond me.
Pros: healthier, happier workers; free fodder for green marketing; ideal feature to emphasize while recruiting new employees; less pressure on car parking facilities; etc.
Cons: ???.
I wonder if any current employees at Dillard's hq are telling the higher-ups that they'd love to be able to ride their bikes to work and zip right in without taking the long way around via the sidewalk...


  1. What... you think they'd provide access to Dillards from the trail? That may be too much forward thinking! And Dillards probably doesn't want that bike riding riff-raff working there anyhow (c:

  2. I have an inquiry in with the City and Jacobs Engineering.
    Even if Dillard's says "heck no" to direct access to their parking lot for some reason, there's still that utility right-of-way between Dillard's and Packett that would get people to the sidewalk where they could take the long way around to the front door.
    Direct access would be a lot more convenient though.