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Mississippi River levees proposed for trail corridor

122 Miles of Levee Trail: Baton Rouge to the Big Easy! Can it be?

From Mississippi River Trail Connections, January 2007Map of Pennsylvania

Baton Rouge, Louisiana - Watch out, Mississippi River Trail riders! The Ponchartrain Levee District board agreed to pay for a study of a proposed 122-mile paved bicycle path built on top of Mississippi River levees between Baton Rouge and New Orleans.

The study, by SJB Group of Baton Rouge, will determine whether the trail is feasible and what obstacles might prevent completion. Six south Louisiana Parishes would be affected by the project. These issues and others were discussed during a recent commission meeting.

"Hundreds of miles of levee trail offering spectacular Delta views, glimpses of the River, and a vast array of wildlife would inspire and delight bicycling enthusiasts from around the world."
Tommy Martinez, SBJ's Director said, "The big areas of concern are where do we place rest or break areas and how do circumvent obstacles?" "We have pipelines running on top of the levee and we'll have to figure out how to handle that." Martinez also said the bike path could serve as an economic development tool along the corridor and an evacuation route. He mentioned he'd talked to Homeland Security about the trail's use during emergencies.

Other states, including Mississippi and Arkansas are closely watching the levee trail study. Hopefully, the actions of the foresighted Ponchartrain Levee Board will help encourage other levee boards to execute similar projects. Hundreds and hundreds of miles of levee trail offering spectacular Delta views, glimpses of the River, and a vast array of wildlife would inspire and delight bicycling enthusiasts from around the world! Dr. John Frusha, Baton Rouge MRT board member, is closely following the project on behalf of MRT.

The Mississippi River Trail is a 3,000-mile system of bicycle-friendly roads and multi-use pathways. The MRT is planned to connect 10 states, 123 counties, and the cities of Minneapolis, St. Louis, Memphis and New Orleans, and hundreds of smaller towns along the way. It's a unique way to experience the Mississippi River's natural wonders, transportation system, recreational facilities and cultural heritage. Mississippi River Trail, Inc. is a 501c3 nonprofit dedicated to facilitating the trail's completion. All donations are tax deductible.

Mississippi River Trail , Inc.
858 N. Jackson Fayetteville, AR 72701
PHONE: 479-236-0938 FAX: 479-571-2665
www.mississippirivertrail.org

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