A new multiuse path linking Petrifying Springs Park with Highway KR and a soon-to-be built trail in Racine County is now open to users, Kenosha County Executive Jim Kreuser announced today.
A ribbon-cutting event to formally commemorate the KR Trail will be held at 5:30 p.m. Monday at the south terminus of the path on the north side of Highway A (Seventh Street), just east of Highway 31 (Green Bay Road). This is across the road from the north entrance to Petrifying Springs Park; attendees are urged to park in the lot next to the park entrance.
From its start in the northwest corner of the park, the 1.5-mile trail continues northwesterly on a newly constructed boardwalk. It then transitions to an asphalt surface that runs parallel to the east side of Highway 31 to Highway KR (First Street), then west alongside the south side of Highway KR to 56th Avenue.
A pushbutton at the intersection of highways 31 and KR activates a walk signal for pedestrians and cyclists to safely cross the road.
“This new trail allows people on foot or on two wheels to access Petrifying Springs Park from neighborhoods in Somers, and from beyond in Racine County,” Kreuser said. “What’s more, we were able to build it with minimal local tax dollars, thanks to grants from the federal government.”
The bulk of the project’s design and construction costs were funded by $873,251 in Congestion Mitigation for Air Quality grants from the Federal Highway Administration.
Soon, the KR Trail will link to Mount Pleasant’s Pike River Pathway, which presently follows the river corridor from just south of Highway 11 to Old Spring Street. The Village of Mount Pleasant is expected to begin construction this summer on a south extension that will take the trail to Highway KR, just west of Highway 31.
The KR trail also ties into Kenosha County’s existing system that allows cyclists and pedestrians to travel from the lakefront to Petrifying Springs, largely on off-street paths. This network includes the Academic Trail Bike Path, which links the Carthage College and University of Wisconsin-Parkside campuses, as well as the north segment of the Kenosha County Multi-Use Trail.
“These trails are bringing communities together, promoting green transportation and fitness,” Kreuser said.
Kenosha County Highway Director Clement Abongwa, who oversaw the KR Trail project, said it will improve safety for people who live and travel in the area.
“Bicyclists, runners and kids will not be competing with vehicles,” Abongwa said. “That also creates a safer situation for motorists.”
Matthew Collins, Kenosha County parks director, said the new trail will also make Petrifying Springs – the flagship of the Kenosha County Parks system – more accessible.
“Anything we can do to bring people into our parks in a safe and healthy way is an added benefit to the community,” Collins said.
More information about Kenosha County’s bike trail system is available online at http://www.kenoshacounty.org/611/County-Bike-Trails. A map of the KR Trail is available for download at https://wi-kenoshacounty2.civicplus.com/DocumentCenter/View/8067/KR-Trail-map.