WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Piece by piece, the Cross-City Trail is winding its way through Wilmington. While the city has yet to break ground on some new areas, other parts that have already been constructed are being torn up.
“You can’t always anticipate every problem,” said Dylan Lee, the assistant to Wilmington City Manager, about a stretch of the Cross-City Trail along Eastwood Road, where a completed section is being torn up because of issues not accounted for when it was built.
“They are doing a massive stormwater improvement,” Lee said. “There was a lot of localized flooding in that area near Cavalier Drive, so City Stormwater is working on a large pipe underneath where the trail was to alleviate that flooding.”
Lee says that section of the Cross-City Trail was completed in 2008 when an old drainage system on the opposite side of the road was in place and design had not yet begun on the new stormwater system. Once design began and engineers ran models of how the system would handle heavy rain, it became clear that the new pipe had to be placed under the trail to best handle flooding and not cause lane closures on Eastwood.
Lee said the $1.6 million project, paid for with stormwater fees from city residents, is set to be done by May. Despite the setback, he said the trail is about 70-percent complete.
“The Cross-City Trail is part of Wilmington’s future,” he said. “It’s alternative transportation. It’s good for people’s health. It’s good for our busy roads, and it’s just a great amenity. It’s the kind of thing people look for when they want to move here.”
Around midday Friday we tried to talk to people in the area about the trail and what they thought of part of it being torn up, but we couldn’t find many people using it.
When complete, the biking and running trail will stretch from Wrightsville Beach to the Pine Valley area.
Tuesday from 5 to 7 p.m., the city will hold an open house at St. Mark’s Catholic Church for anyone who wants to learn more about the next segment of the trail that will connect the College Acres area to the existing trail on Eastwood.