Orange County Celebrates Pine Hills Trail Ribbon Cutting in District 6
Mayor Teresa Jacobs, District 6 Commissioner Victoria P. Siplin and District 2 Commissioner Bryan Nelson joined Orange County Parks and Recreation to host the ribbon-cutting ceremony for Pine Hills Trail – Phase 1 on Oct. 18 at Barnett Park.
Funded by Federal Enhancement dollars administrated by the Florida Department of Transportation, the 2.5-mile segment was opened ahead of schedule with construction estimated at $6.7 million. Orange County Public Works oversaw the Phase 1 construction.
“In time, this trail will connect to the Shingle Creek Trail and cover a critical gap in Florida’s Coast-to-Coast Trail, a 250-mile trail across the state, linking communities from the Gulf Coast to the east coast, “ said Mayor Jacobs. “By investing in our Parks infrastructure, we are not only investing in eco-tourism – an industry that has grown significantly – but also creating trails like this one that celebrate each unique community it passes through in Orange County.”
The first phase of the trail project uses an existing Duke Energy electrical power transmission utility corridor. The project consists of construction a 10-foot to 12-foot wide asphalt trail, with one-foot wide concrete ribbon curb on either side.
“I am pleased to celebrate this long-awaited day,” said Orange County District 6 Commissioner Victoria Siplin. “For years to come, children and families in the surrounding neighborhoods will use this trail for walking, running, biking and skating.”
Orange County has been working in partnership with Duke Energy, formerly Progress Energy, since 2002 on the conveyance of the property to the county. Preliminary discussions with Duke Energy to move forward with the project re-started in 2013. Acquisition was completed in June 2015.
The county’s master plan calls for two more phases of the trail. The second will go north from Silver Star Road to Clarcona-Ocoee Road and the third from Clarcona-Ocoee Road north to the Seminole-Wekiva Trail. When completed, the Pine Hills Trail will be about eight miles in length.
Orange County Parks and Recreation has 100 parks, trails and facilities and maintains 15,000-plus acres of property. Programs and special events are offered for youth, adult and seniors throughout the year. For more information, visit www.ocfl.net/parks.
Featured Photo: Mayor Teresa Jacobs, District 6 Commissioner Victoria P. Siplin and District 2 Commissioner Bryan Nelson at the Pine Hills Trail ribbon-cutting ceremony.