The city of South Bend is detailing a proposed trail along a rail corridor that has gone unused for more than 20 years. Plans call for the Coal Line Trail to initially include two phases, with potential for a third section. Current construction estimates put the project at $4.5 million and it is expected to begin in 2020 and be complete around a year later.
The city is currently seeking public input on the early phases of the proposed trail, including topographical, environmental, bridge and preferred amenity feedback.
City of South Bend Department of Community Investment Planner Chris Dressel says the trail has "a wide spectrum of potential users" and would include dedicated pathways away from normal road traffic. He says riders making "purposeful trips" could use the corridor for trips to a local Martin’s Supermarket location with easy access. Years ago, the path was used to deliver coal to the University of Notre Dame.
Sights along the proposed route include west side neighborhoods, the St. Joseph River, Holy Cross College, Saint Mary’s College and, of course, the University of Notre Dame. Dressel says the project would be paid for through an 80-20 ratio of federal-to-local investment. The trail could eventually hook into two existing trails, another potential future trail and the Indiana/Michigan River Valley Trail.
You can connect to more about the early-stage plans by clicking here.