SPARTANBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – Attention drivers in the City of Spartanburg: Some roads will be changing to allow for the extension of the Rail Trail.
The Rail Trail has been a staple in the City of Spartanburg for years. Now, the city is extending it by more than half a mile.
“By going up Union Street, and then Kennedy Street and then going past the community college on Converse Street,” said Chris George, the city’s communications manager.
George said it will go from Union and Henry Streets to Barnet Park. To accommodate the changes, George said some roads will be getting narrower.
Union and Kennedy Streets will go from four lanes to two and the northbound side of Converse Street will become one lane.
George said the changes shouldn’t be a problem for the traffic on those roads.
“They were built to accommodate about 15,000 cars a day, most of those roads get under 2,000 cars a day. So, they have way more capacity then they’ve ever actually needed,” he said.
The space created will be for pedestrians and cyclists.
“This trail will be protected by a curb from traffic. So, it gives folks, especially cyclists and people who might bring kids out, that extra barrier, that extra feeling of protection,” said George.
George said that on top of the curbs, they will also be adding more pedestrian cross-walks along the trail. He said this $2 million project is aimed at helping connect people with downtown.
“The Rail Trail is by far our most used recreational asset in the city, and, you know, providing access into downtown for that trail, just easier access, in general, for pedestrians and cyclists into downtown,” said George.
People who use the trail are excited.
“We walk about four miles. We walk the whole entire trail. So, we’re excited about them extending it,” said Ann Webb and Cheryl Robinette.
“It’ll be fun to walk downtown and get up to Barnet Park and come back. It’ll be great,” said Claude Saleeby.
George said that after phase one, closing down Union Street, is done, they will go into phase two, which is closing down Kennedy Street and then finally phase three will consist of closing down Converse Street.
He said they’re aiming to have the extension done in the next five to six months.