City awarded grant for west side trail project

The City of Guthrie continues to locate grants to help assist in adding sidewalks and trails on the east and west sides of town. The first piece of the puzzle for the west side trail project has been tentatively approved for funding.

The goal for the Sidewalk Connectivity and Elbow Trail phase would allow for pedestrians and bicyclists to access sidewalks on the west side of town that leads into a trail system into Noble Park and The Elbow.

The overall project would begin on Oklahoma Ave. (just west of the railroad tracks), to 5th Street, up to Warner Ave. leading to Banner Park at 10th Street and back south to Noble. Ave.

On the same plan, a concrete trail will begin on the south side of Noble Ave. beginning at 5th Street and angling to 9th Street where a pedestrian bridge will be constructed to allow pedestrians into future trails throughout the park and Elbow. Future dollars and grants will be researched to construct trails inside the park and Elbow.

The City was notified last week by Oklahoma Tourism & Recreation Department that they were tentatively approved for a $300,000 grant for the south side (highlighted in green on the map above) of the project, which will allow for a 2,450-foot-long 12-foot-wide concrete trail for pedestrians and bicycle traffic and a 100-foot-long clear span 12-foot-wide pedestrian bridge.

Noble Park is no longer accessible, as it is surrounded by Cottonwood Creek and any earlier bridges no longer exist. The area is heavily wooded, except for one clearing near the north side where a pavilion building sits in ruins. The park was established in 1890, just after the Land Run which settled Guthrie. The park was constructed on a flood plain and Cottonwood Creek has continually flooded over the years.

An area within the park known as The Elbow because of the meandering path of the Cottonwood was once occupied by Guthrie’s black community during and after the days of segregation, but the area is no longer accessible. It was eventually condemned by the City.

East Guthrie Sidewalk Connectivity Project

The City is also looking for grant opportunities to fund a sidewalk/bike lane primarily on Walnut Street beginning at Guthrie Upper Elementary (GUES) to Oklahoma Ave. and from Walnut to Warner Ave. leading into Highland Park.

The nearly $600,000 project would tie into the current sidewalks, which run on the west side, of Walnut St. and travel to Guthrie Junior High School. At Warner Ave., sidewalks would be installed on the north side leading pedestrians and bicyclists to Highland Park.

The City is hopeful to land a grant with the Oklahoma Tobacco Settlement Endowment Trust (TSET) that would fund the super-majority of the second portion of the west side sidewalk project and the complete east side project.

City officials now wait for the pre-proposal to be approved before submitting a full application in September. The TSET grant would be awarded in November.


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