Dougherty County-Albany linking up trails

Dougherty County-Albany linking up trails

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Some Albany area leaders envision an intricate system of inter-connected trails and parks they hope will help transform the city.

They started work Tuesday on a new Greenway System master plan.

Soon, multiple trails along the Flint River and throughout Albany and Dougherty County may be linked together. And many people can't wait.

"I  love riding my bike and I am really happy that we're going to have more infrastructure that's safer to get more people riding their bikes here in Albany," said cyclist Lonnie Wormley.

On Tuesday, supporters joined city and county leaders at a stakeholders meeting to start planning the Greenway System, and the ideas of what it could be are over flowing.

"As the city gets involved even with these slow rolled rides that we're going to start having in downtown it will just encourage more people to come out and ride bikes," explained Wormley.

One of the hopes people have is that this project will have an economic impact like other trails in places such as Columbus and Atlanta.

"The economic impact can be very substantial. When you think about people coming from miles around to ride your trail and visit your points of destination," said Rails to Trails President Bo Johnson.

The goal is to connect the current Riverfront Trail to other trails like the ones at Chehaw Park.  All of that may also eventually be connected to the city's new Rails to Trails project and hiking and mountain biking trails south of the Civic Center.

There's still a lot to do, but things are moving forward.

"You know we're in the early stages right now of putting this plan together and it's so important to get it right," said Johnson.

They do plan to get the community involved by having a meeting for the public so residents can give their feedback on the ideas.

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