The Town of Tonawanda is expanding its recreation offerings, with plans to open a 1.5 mile bike and pedestrian trail this summer that wraps around Lincoln Park.
The Lincoln Park trail will run along Decatur Drive to the south, east along Parkhurst Boulevard and then through the park to the north, behind Franklin Elementary and Middle School, and west linking with Parker Boulevard and Darlington Drive.
It will also will be linked, along the west corridor to the successful $2.5 million, 3.9 mile Tonawanda Rails to Trails, which opened in August.
The town recently proposed a $330,000 plan to upgrade the Rails to Trails and is seeking Niagara River Greenway funds. If approved, new trail cuts would create 12 more entry points along the Rail to Trail.
The primary goal of the new Lincoln Park Green Initiative is to take care of storm water drainage and flooding in Lincoln Park, Town Engineer James Jones explained.
Existing sidewalks around the park will be replaced with a porous material designed to absorb and filter storm water, especially near Parkhurst Boulevard.
"We've been scratching our heads for years how to take care of it," Jones said. "This material will act like a sponge, absorbing all of the water."
Jones told the board that this is the first use of this type of material has been used in the town to replace a sidewalk.
This will also create a multi-use path for bikes and pedestrians.
The state will provide $700,000 from the New York State Green Infrastructure Grant Program and federal community block club grant fund and in-kind services will provide the balance of the $830,000 budget.
The town will open bids on the project on Feb. 28 and are expected to break ground in the spring. Jones said the Lincoln Park Trail is expected to be completed in the fall.
Jones also told the board that the town during its work session that these trails are expected to be utilized when Slow Roll Buffalo comes to the area. No date was announced.
Current plans are to make this a City of Tonawanda ride, but Supervisor Joseph H. Emminger said he'd like the town to contribute and make this a Tonawanda Slow Ride.
No route has been mapped out, but Jones said streets will be closed by police for the ride, which could draw as many as 2,000 bicyclists for a slow ride around parts of the Tonawanda area.