Local News

Plans revived to extend Crabtree Creek Trail to Umstead State Park

Posted June 23, 2013

Crabtree Creek Trail in Raleigh

— The Triangle's greenway system covers four counties with a network of interconnected paths and trails that are soon expected to span more than 200 miles.

Many greenway users, however, are disappointed that Raleigh's 14.5-mile Crabtree Creek Trail, which begins at Milburnie Road, ends abruptly just 1 mile from Umstead State Park in the northwestern part of the city.

"The idea of being able to take my bike and ride there, then take a walk and come home without ever stepping in my car – it's fabulous," said Roz Egan, who frequently hikes the trail.

The city of Raleigh is looking to bridge the grassy gap.

It recently applied for a $2 million grant from the Wake County Open Space Partnership to extend the Crabtree Creek Trail to just inside Umstead Park – a $4 million project that would be split between both the city and the county.

"The one chokepoint that is stopping us from connecting Raleigh to the rest of the entire region is right there," said Sig Hutchinson, chairman of Wake County's Open Space & Parks Advisory Committee. "This, ultimately, is the holy grail for this system."

Raleigh aims to extend Crabtree Creek Trail Raleigh aims to extend Crabtree Creek Trail

Hutchinson and the committee are expected to make recommendations to the Wake County Board of Commissioners within the next two months on how the county should allocate $21 million in grant money for greenway projects.

The Crabtree Creek trail extension was originally funded several years ago but because of litigation with a nearby quarry, the money was allocated elsewhere.

That court case is still pending.

"We have to continue to be in dialogue in hopes, ultimately, something can be resolved and we can make this corridor complete," Hutchinson said.

Dan Dwyer is one of many who hopes the case is on the fast-track to a resolution.

"I've been staring at this trail for years. It's an empty greenway trail," Dwyer said. "We need to figure something out to get it past that quarry back and get this trail open to the rest of the people."

Construction is already underway to extending the trail eastward by late spring of 2014.

In May, the City Council awarded a $4.1 million contract that will extend along Crabtree Creek from Milburnie Road to the Neuse River Trail at Anderson Point Park.


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  • Classified Jun 25, 2013

    “There must be hundreds of streets and roads that need repair and they spend money so boys can ride their bikes.” superman

    Actually there are boys, girls, men, women, young, old, in shape, overweight and handicapped that I see on the greenways. People are on bikes, foot, skateboards, rollerblades recumbent bikes and walkers. The greenways are for everyone to enjoy and are a win/win for communities that have them.

  • Classified Jun 25, 2013

    “We dont need bike trails to get exercise. If you look around there are numerous ways you can get exercise at home.” superman

    Simple answer to that is, don’t use them. That creates more space for those that do want to use them, but keep in mind that the greenways are here to stay and they are expanding.

  • Classified Jun 25, 2013

    “Parks have nothing to do with a company locating here. They want local and state tax breaks. Its the money that talks.” superman

    Not sure where you’re getting that info but there has been many studies and interviews with representatives of large companies relating to the economic benefits of urban greenways and they’re all positive. Who knows, it might be due to the greenways enticing big companies to the Raleigh area that will get your road fixed.

  • superman Jun 25, 2013

    We have a neighbor who rides his bike and goes to the gym several times a week. His wife is at home mowing the yard, cleaning gutters, trimming bushes, picking up dead limbs. Have seen her powerwashing the house and exterior painting. She even washes his Jeep. We dont need bike trails to get exercise. If you look around there are numerous ways you can get exercise at home. Parks have nothing to do with a company locating here. They want local and state tax breaks. Its the money that talks.

  • superman Jun 25, 2013

    Most of the tax dollars also come from people who work and also who buy gas and contribute to the highway fund.

    jrbrock The last time I called they came out and repaired pot holes. Both streets in our subdivision are short. They spent an entire day repairing pot holes and places where the asphalt had upheaved. Our street is just beyond the stage for repair. There must be hundreds of streets and roads that need repair and they spend money so boys can ride their bikes. Whether you want them or not depends on if you are on the receiving end. Just what is the enemy that prevents our street from being resurfaced. We did a petition several years ago and their response was we dont have the money and there are more streets and roads that need to be fixed than we have the funds. You would have to live near the greenway anyway to use it which limits the use. Then there are the hundreds of bridges and overpasses that need to be repaired and they spend money on bike trails for adults w

  • geoherb1 Jun 25, 2013

    The greenways are a one of the best things going for Raleigh. More and more people are discovering them. I used to see very few people on some stretches that are crowded now on weekends.

  • Cock a doodle doo Jun 24, 2013

    "Another waste of taxpayer money to accommodate a few people." -superman

    Bah. This is money well spent which will add a lot more to the value and joy of living in Raleigh. Having the greenways and parks is a significant factor in businesses relocating here. I bet we get a lot more bang for our buck by extending the greenway.

  • awr117 Jun 24, 2013

    These trails are great! Amazing how quickly you can get from one point in Raleigh to another by using these greenways!

  • jrbrock Jun 24, 2013

    Hey superman have you tried the "Click it and fix it" website? They seem fairly responsive.

  • ezLikeSundayMorning Jun 24, 2013

    The greenways are actually one of the best investments Raleigh can make. Most importantly, citizens want them and heavily use them. This benefits their health and overall health of society. They reduce traffic and parking congestion, as well as associated air pollution. And dollar for dollar, they result in more job creation than other government projects. Greenways even increase property values nearby.

    That's not to say resurfacing neighborhoods isn't important, it's just that you shouldn't think of greenways as the enemy and the reason your road isn't being resurfaced.