New King of Trails Bridge to Connect to Lehigh Portland Trails

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Thrive Allen County has been awarded another grant to help fund construction of the “King of Trails” bridge over Elm Creek on South Washington Avenue:

People for Bikes, an industry coalition of bicycling suppliers and retailers, has awarded Thrive Allen County a $10,000 grant towards completion of the “King of Trails” bike/ped bridge over Elm Creek in Iola.

The new bridge, on South Washington Avenue, will span Elm Creek and provide a safe and convenient connection between Iola residential areas and recreational amenities such as the Lehigh Portland Trails, the Southwind Rail Trail, and Elm Creek Park South, as well as employment opportunities in Iola’s South Industrial Park.

The bridge project was initiated with a $59,320 grant from the Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City, which was awarded in December 2015 to fun preliminary engineering work. In June 2016, the Sunflower Foundation awarded $30,000, and the Kansas Health Foundation’s Community Engagement Initiative has committed $20,000 to the project.

The bridge is a critical link in Allen County’s growing network of trails, bike routes, and on-street bicycling infrastructure. Fund-raising is ongoing, with hope of reaching the $260,000 goal in 2017.