Seeing was believing Tuesday night for the Dallas County Conservation
Board when they took a driving tour of possible routes for a bike trail
linking the Raccoon River Valley Trail in Perry and the High Trestle
Trail in Woodward.
After discussing strengths, weaknesses and costs of the alternative
routes, the board voted unanimously to pursue building a trail along
Iowa Highway 141 running easterly from Perry to O Avenue, then northerly
along O Avenue into Bouton, then easterly to Woodward along the former
railroad right of way.
A plan B for the Bouton-to-Woodward leg would see the trail running easterly along County Road R30.
The Perry-to-Bouton leg of the link trail has proven the most challenging in terms of land acquisition and narrow roads.
It’s one thing to look at this on a map,” said Dallas County
Conservation Board Vice Chair Mark Powell, “but now I see what a bear it
would be to try to connect to Bouton from Perry. It makes perfect sense
to use 141.”
Powell chaired the Tuesday night meeting in the absence of board
chair Lorinda Inman, who joined the meeting by phone link after the
“Highway 141 is the easiest route,” said board member Glenn Vondra.
“It’s not the most scenic route, but it lets us stay away from gravel
Richard M. Voelker, lead architect on the link-trail project with
Ankeny-based Snyder and Associates, accompanied the conservation board
on its driving tour and explained features of the alternative routes.
The preferred route to Bouton, running along the former railroad right
of way easterly out of Perry and then easterly along 130th Street to
U.S. Highway 169, faces “an extreme lack of room and some serious
drainage issues,” Voelker said.
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