Local

Project seeks to expand hike, bike trails in northwest Harris County

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A bold plan is in motion to add a series of hike and bike trails across northwest Harris County, and residents in the area are getting a chance to voice their opinions about it.

Right now, the section of trail at Collins Park runs just a few miles. But it could become part of a 40-mile trail system if planners have their way.

Along the five miles of wooded trail at Mercer Arboretum, the women of a tai chi group find serenity.

"I think it's great. I think it's wonderful because it encourages people to do more in the outdoors," tai chi instructor Lynn Perrin said.

It could soon be a part of a 40-mile long, multi-use trail system winding through some of Houston's northern suburbs called the Cypress Creek Greenway Project.

It's expected to bring even more people to the arboretum.

"That's what we're here for. This is a Harris County Precinct 4 park and we welcome everyone," Mercer Arboretum Director Darrin Duling said.

Already a few miles of trail exist around the project's anchor parks, like the Mercer Arboretum, Meyer Park and Collins Park. But if Jim Robertson, the chairman of the project, has his way, it will be transformed.

"It's important to me. Initially this was a quality of life issue," he said.

The biggest stumbling block right now is funding. Precincts 3 and 4 are building parts of the project.

"The municipal utility districts are also funding sections of the trail in the various MUD districts. In addition to that, some developers are building parks and trails," Robertson said.

But there seems to be lots of support from the residents of northwest Harris County for a project that could be a decade in the making.

"It's a very wonderful park and I hope to see that it will happen," Perrin said.

There are three meetings for the public to give their input on the project. The first is at 6:30pm tonight at Saint Aiden's Episcopal Church.
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