The battle for a bikable Greenbelt link through Garden City has taken another turn.
For years there has been talk about a possible bridge linking the section of the pathway in Eagle--on the north side of the river--to the bike-friendly portion on the south side of the river in Garden City. But that talk came closer to reality when the city received a $98,000 grant through the Federal Highway Transportation Authority to do preliminary engineering on what is being dubbed the Garden City West Bridge.
The funds are administered through the Idaho Transportation Department and the COMPASS board signed off on the plan. In order to get the grant, the city and Ada County had to commit to a 20 percent match of funds.
Once constructed, the bridge would be the only river crossing between Eagle Road and Glenwood Street and be located near the head of Eagle Island. It would tie into the newly opened section of paved Greenbelt in Garden City and link it with the still-dirt section of the path in Eagle.
But what may be of most interest to bikers is that the bridge would mean they would be able to avoid the contentious section of pathway that runs through the Riverside Village subdivision. The dirt path has been the subject of lawsuits by bikers who take issue with the city's walk-only designation along a short section of the path, which forces bikers to either get off and walk or take a winding detour through the neighborhood.
No date has been set for when the new bridge might actually be built.
And since we're talking Garden City, the city is helping kayakers access the new Boise River Recreation Park, which borders both cities.
Garden City has leased a plot of land at the end of 35th Street near the river for the express purpose of providing more parking options for those using the river park. While parking is open to all, the city is reminding everyone that the parking area is subject to the same rules that apply to area parks, and that drivers cannot drive across lots or down the Greenbelt from 36th Street to access the lot.
And now, for something completely different, the organizers of the St. Luke's Women's Fitness Celebration are looking for a few hundred volunteers for the Sept. 20-22 event, which includes the fitness celebration and the 5K run/walk/stroll.
For more info, visit celebrateall.org.