2018-09-13 / Views

Two — make that three — thoughts on Heritage Trail

Two thoughts on the final leg of the Heritage Trail.

First, we’re glad that acrimony over the trail’s route is waning.

And second, it’s going to be expensive. Guess that’s why they’re not building new roads.

The cost just to design plans for the last leg, which will run from Bohemian Road to Good Harbor Trail, is $56,000. That’s how much Networks Northwest, the quasi-government agency that plays important roles in so many progressive projects in the Grand Traverse area, paid to hire a Petoskeybased firm.

Private funds and public grants have paid for the work. The first 17.6 miles of the trail cost $9.5 million, with another 5.2 miles to go.

Yea, that’s a lot of money. But the Heritage Trail is one public project that gets used often. And we believe it’s become one more major draw for families to visit the Leelanau Peninsula. Local businesses and the people they employ are beneficiaries, as well as residents who are some of the most avid trail riders.

About the acrimony. Past pages of the Leelanau Enterprise are filled with similar arguments against the Leelanau Trail, which also was the subject of a civil lawsuit. Members of the Little Traverse Lake Property Association tried to prevent the final Trail leg from passing by their property along Traverse Lake Road.

But the route makes sense to us, providing walkers and bikers with a more pleasant, woodsy experience along with a break from M-22 traffic.

The alternative route proposed by the lake association wasn’t going to happen. It cut through a designated Wilderness area that literally required an act of Congress to create. The 32,000-acre Wilderness plan for the park, signed into law by President Obama in 2014, had been stuck for decades in legislative purgatory.

Traverse Area Recreation and Transportation Trails (TART) provides another link between the Heritage Trail and the Leelanau Trail.

Without the nonprofit TART, Leelanau County would be without a trail of any consequence.

So our third thought is to offer thanks to TART for all the organization done, east to west.

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This editorial makes the same

This editorial makes the same mistake found in some of the Enterprise's reporting. The part of the trail you discuss is not "the final Trail leg"--as anyone familiar with the trail should know. The FINAL leg will be the part going south of Empire to the Leelanau county line.

This editorial makes the same

This editorial makes the same mistake found in some of the Enterprise's reporting. The part of the trail you discuss is not "the final Trail leg"--as anyone familiar with the trail should know. The FINAL leg will be the part going south of Empire to the Leelanau county line.