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Jed Boal Reporting People who bike and hike the trails of Salt Lake County now have another option to stretch their legs. A critical bridge in an expanding trail network opened today for cyclists, runners and hikers.
With the snip of a band of bike tubes The Bridge at Parley's Crossing opened. It boasts a 280 foot span over I-215.
"This project is becoming a reality. It's been a dream, but it's becoming a reality," Salt Lake County Mayor Peter Corroon said.
Non-motorized traffic can now flow from the Bonneville Shoreline Trail on the east bench, then over to Parley's Nature Park.
Children from Canyon Rim Academy crossed first today, but in the years ahead plenty of people will peddle and stride across the bridge for recreation and commuting. "This is separated from traffic. It's safe. It's going to promote health, mental and physical, who doesn't need a little of that?" asked Juan Arce-Larreta, Parley's Rails, Trails and Tunnels Coalition (PRATT) chair.
For years many have dreamed of a network of trails to connect communities across the Wasatch Front.
The PRATT organization rounded up federal, state, local and private support. They secured $10 million in federal money as part of the highway bill. "This is just a wonderful investment in the quality of life here. They won me over that day," Rep. Jim Matheson said.
This was certainly a complicated project, and there's a lot more work to be done to run the trail another eight miles to the Jordan River Parkway.
Next year the trail should extend through Tanner Park, then on to Sugarhouse Park and on to the Jordan Parkway.
Planners hope this bridge gathers even more support for the system.
For more details on the Parley's Trail Corridor, just click on the related link.