Citing liability concerns, the city intends to tear out an unsanctioned off-road bike trail built by cycling enthusiasts in Little River Corridor Park.
City crews will start removing the structures later this week “to ensure continued public safety and protect taxpayers from liability,” says a news release issued by the city Monday. Earlier in the day, city council voted to remove the trail, after meeting in-camera to discuss concerns about the trail, located in an environmentally sensitive natural area in the east-end park.
The news release points out that just last year the city opened beginner and intermediate tracks in Malden Park and Little River Corridor Park. The final phase of the project calls for an advanced uphill and downhill track at Malden Park, as well as an engineered pump track in a section of Little River Corridor Park. Both are supposed to be built this year.
The $500,000 off-road tracks were approved by council to provide off-road cyclists places to go after the city shut down makeshift cycling trails that were damaging the terrain in Little River and environmentally sensitive Black Oak Heritage Park.
Story continues below
This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.
“We understand cycling enthusiasts have the best of intentions when they build these trails, but these trails are not designed or engineered in accordance with industry best practices,” senior parks manager James Chacko said in the release, adding that community members don’t have the authority to ensure the tracks are safe.
“In this case, the layout, ramps, culverts and materials used could easily lead to unanticipated injuries, and, as park owner, the city has to head off potential liability by acting.”
The city is asking that cyclists instead use sanctioned trails located throughout the region.