Officials broke ground for a new section of Mobile’s Three Mile Creek Greenway on Thursday. From left are Josh McElhenney of McElhenney Construction Co., Dewayne Hood of the Alabama Department of Transportation, Mobile City Councilmember Cory Penn, Mayor Sandy Stimpson, Mobile County Commissioner Merceria Ludgood, Commissioner Chris Blankenship of the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and Tom Piper of the South Alabama Regional Planning Commission. (Arthur L. Mack/Call News)
By ARTHUR L. MACK
City of Mobile officials broke ground for the next section of the Three Mile Creek Greenway Trail covering a half mile from the Tricentennial Park trail terminus in Toulminville to the University Hospital campus.
The project, which is expected to be complete in nine months, was designed by Dix.Hite + Partners and is being led by the McElhenney Construction Co. Partners in the project include the Alabama Department of Transportation and the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.
“It’s going to be a great amenity for the people that work at University Hospital,” said Jennifer Greene, the city’s director of programs and project management. “They’ll have access to recreation so they can walk to work whenever they want to, as well as the community.”
Mayor Sandy Stimpson said the Greenway Trail has been talked about for 35 years and not always in flattering terms.
“I can remember when I heard the first time they talked about it that it was a crazy idea and Mobilians had that same thought,” he said. “But it’s far from a crazy idea. It is a great idea of how to connect the east side of I-65 all the way to downtown and the University of South Alabama. From a recreational standpoint and the connectivity of bringing the community together, it’s a great project.”
City Councilmember Cory Penn said his daughter learned to ride her bicycle where the trail started and now other children will have more trail to use.
“We don’t have too many places where we can go to different communities and enjoy our nature,” Penn said. “This gives our community an opportunity to be able to do that. Sometimes, when you get an idea that’s so big, you wonder if it’s going to be possible but we have some great partners here and they came together to make this happen.”
Once completed, the Three Mile Creek Greenway Trail will cover 6½ miles and connect Mobilians to multiple city parks, local infrastructure and downtown Mobile.
Upcoming trail phases will connect University Hospital, Mill Street Park and Bush Park at the Boys & Girls Club. The existing trail east of Tricentennial Park will also be connected to a new trailhead at Dr. Martin Luther King Avenue, tying into the new bike lanes and sidewalks created as part of the Broad Street revitalization project.