by Dan Colton
For The Beacon
Sheboygan is moving forward with a plan to add additional bicycle and pedestrian trails.
According to Chad Pelishek, director of planning and development, the city recently approved about $1,271,000 to purchase right-of-ways from Union Pacific Railroad.
The easement purchase will allow for construction of a bike and pedestrian trail from Pennsylvania Avenue to Union Avenue, and along Indiana Avenue from South 10th Street to the vicinity of South 14th Street.
The project footprint lies within the tax incremental district created for Indiana Avenue.
Under the purchase and sale agreement between Sheboygan and Union Pacific, the city obtained about 21 acres of land, Pelishek said.
He said the new trail will tie into Sheboygan County’s Shoreline 400 trail.
The exact length of the upcoming path hasn’t been determined yet.
The city will next conduct land surveys as the project continues on, according to Pelishek.
“We’re completing the survey to understand … what the final price will look like,” Pelishek said, explaining that the Department of Transportation had previously constructed some upgrades in the general area during previous trail improvements.
Pelishek said the trail work is an aspect of the Harbor Centre Master Plan as well as Sheboygan’s five-year strategic plan.
He said the city estimates a roughly $2.5 million bill to complete the construction.
The $1.27 million easement price tag was calculated based on 2012 costs when Sheboygan County purchased the northern section of the Shoreline 400 trail.
State and federal grants will be available to assist in construction, according to city documents.
City documents say environmental assessments will be conducted with the Bay-Lake Regional Planning Commission through a grant from the Environmental Protection Agency.
The trail will likely not be completed for a few years, Pelishek said. He said design element of the project will probably take about a year.
“This is a 2021, 2022 project, so we probably have at least a good portion of a year to design,” Pelishek said.
“The construction wouldn’t be complete until the end of 2022, or for sure the end of 2023.”