Bike path to be built near Side Cut Metropark - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Bike path to be built near Side Cut Metropark

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MAUMEE, OH (Toledo News Now) -

A new bicycle path along River Road near Side Cut Metropark in Maumee will be taking shape soon and cyclists say they're ready. The road is narrow and makes it unsafe for cyclists and motorists.

"It can be a tight squeeze," said bicyclist Janet Smith.

Smith has been bicycling for more than 20 years. She uses Side Cut Metroparks at least 4 to 5 times a week.

"Some of the motorists don't think we should be on the road. They don't appreciate us on the road," said Smith.

The city of Maumee and the Metroparks have teamed up to solve that problem. They worked together to install a new bike trail. The trail will be installed at the entrance of Side Cut Metropark to Riverside Cemetery, as well as a section just past the I-475 bridge overpass to Jerome Road.

"We will also have a separate trail that will come onto Metroparks property here at Side Cut so it will be removed a little bit from the road," said Scott Carpertner of the Metroparks.

The city also entered into an agreement with the metropolitan park district of the Toledo area to maintain the new path. It's a $650,000 project that benefits more than cyclists.

"I think it's real important not just for the bikers but the other traffic that goes through here," said cyclist Tom Rairdom.

Rairdom wears his helmet and mirror as a safety precaution. He's looking forward to the new path.

"I think my fear factor will go down a little bit in regards to the cars, especially during the fishing season because everyone is stopping and looking at the river," said Rairdom.

The state of Ohio requires motorists to give bikers at least 3 feet while the trail is still in the planning phase. Smith has a message for drivers.

"Watch when you're passing because some cars are too eager to pass us and don't see the oncoming traffic, so be aware of the oncoming traffic and give us our room," said Smith.

The next step for this project is for the Metroparks Board to approve their end of the agreement with the city. That meeting is expected to happen in June and the start of the new path could happen as early as this year.

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