A $700,000 project that will connect two bikeways in Kettering and Centerville by creating a path along Hewitt Avenue is moving forward.
The city of Kettering, with the help of the Miami Valley Regional Planning Commission, is set to link the Iron Horse Trail to the existing bikeway along Bigger Road that crosses I-675. Hewitt Avenue runs perpendicular to both pathways.
“The intent here is to create a continuous, safe route for cyclists to cross the interstate, connecting residents south of 675 to the Nation’s Largest Paved Trail Network,” MVRPC Environmental Planning Manager Matthew Lindsey said.
Construction for the connector is scheduled for 2022 and should be completed the same year. Kettering will serve as lead agency on the project.
Construction includes replacing a five-foot sidewalk along Hewitt Avenue with a 10-foot multi-use path. The project will also include removal and replacement of existing concrete driveways and curb on the south side of Hewitt Avenue, according to Lindsey.
The project will then continue 240 feet on the west side of Bigger Road before crossing Bigger and connecting with the existing asphalt multi-use path. The crossing will be modified to include safety features including a safety island, signage and rapid-flashing beacons.
Kettering Assistant City Manager Steve Bergstresser said the project is “all about connectivity.”
“It establishes the north and south bikeways,” Bergstresser said. “If we didn’t make this project, there’s no other way to get across 675, unless you were to build another bridge or dig a tunnel under 675.”
The bike trail at Iron Horse Park runs north to south, as does the bike path on Bigger Road. Hewitt Avenue would serve as the connector between the two, giving Kettering residents access to the bike path on I-675, and Centerville residents access to the Iron Horse Trail.
The total cost of the project is $721,800. MVRPC has funded $348,400 toward the project with Kettering and Centerville splitting the local funding 50-50 since the project would benefit both communities.
In 2008, the Centerville-Washington Park District and the cities of Kettering and Centerville, paved the IronHorseTrail, a 2-mile route from Hempstead Station Drive in Kettering south through Iron Horse Park to Interstate 675.