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Next Phase of Towpath Trail Opens in Cleveland's Flats

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The Metroparks and nonprofit Canalway Partners have opened another portion of a bike trail in the Flats that's meant to carry people from downtown as far as Akron and beyond. ideastream's Nick Castele reports.

Monday, July 7, 2014 at 5:32 pm

The trail weaves along the west bank of the Cuyahoga River, beneath the Lorain-Carnegie Bridge, in a park called Scranton Flats. There are fish habitats along the edge and a deck that juts into the river, in what is still largely an industrial area.

It cost about $9 million, cobbled together from state and federal grants.

Tim Donovan, the director of Canalway Partners, the nonprofit overseeing the projects, said this was part of an ambitious plan.

"One day in the city of Cleveland, 90 percent of the residents will be within a 10-minute bike ride to an off-road trail system that will deliver you to the lake, to downtown, to the national parks, all the Cleveland Metroparks, to Edgewater, to the zoo," Donovan said at the event marking the trail opening. "That's the vision."

There's a riverside park planned for the north end of the path. To the south, the path will plug into the Towpath Trail, which winds toward Akron and extends as far as Tuscarawas County.

Organizers say they've been planning this for decades, and it's supposed to be finished in about five years. It's being completed now piece by piece.

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