Monday, September 19, 2005

Historic Battlefield Hike and Bike Trail

At left is the Federal Courthouse where the soon to come Linear Park will be located in front of the courthouse. The Historic Battlefield Hike & Bike Trail would begin here and follow the old rail road tracks almost exactly north to the Palo Alto National Battlefield Park.

In the near future near future, Brownsville will have the longest hike and bike trail in South Texas and maybe even San Antonio. Once it is completed and stretched linearly, I calculated about 9.1 miles long but doesn't include the section of the trail that UTB/TSC is going to build (called College Park) and the Paseo de la Resaca trail on the intersection of Paredes Line Rd that is already built that will eventually connect to the Brownsville hike & bike trail! Putting these together would equal to about 17 miles of hike and bike trail stretching from the Lincoln Park near UTB/TSC to the Palo Alto Historic National Battlefield Park near Los Fresnos.

Phew, that's on massive trail for the happy joggers and bikers around town and another way for Brownsville residents to get their exercise. Let's start from the beginning of the Historic Battlefield Hike & Bike Trail.

Historic Battlefield Hike & Bike Trail

This trail will begin at the footsteps of the Federal Courthouse between 6th & 7th St as pictured above. The future Linear Park will be at this location. From here, the trail goe east along the old railroad tracks (now removed) under the 77/83 Expressway and then turn left along the city Buena Vida Cemetary. It keeps going straight north paralleling the Paredes Line Rd along the old tracks crossing several major roads and boulevards.

The first crossing is the Boca Chica Blvd. This is a seven lane (center lane included) blvd and would be the most dangerous to cross. After this crossing is the Price Rd crossing, which is five lanes across. Then comes FM 802 or Ruben M. Torres Blvd (don't care for the name of the latter!) that is also five lanes across. From here is a long stretch next to the Brownsville Country Club and the Brownsville Event Center all the way to Alton Gloor (former Tejon Rd) Blvd, which is also five lanes across. The final strecth of the trail crosses on more major raod called FM 511. The Palo ALto Battlefield Park is located on the corner of FM 511 and Paredes Line Rd (FM 1847). The trail would have to cross over FM 1847 and your there; 9.1 miles of hike and bike just using the Historic Battlefield Hike & Bike Trail!

College Park Hike & Bike Trail

The University of Texas @ Brownsville/Texas Southmost College (UTB/TSC) will be constructing its own hike and bike trail called College Park. Basically, the trail will wind around the existing resacas (ox bow lake to you northerners!) with sidewalks. I believe that the trail will go around the famouse "horseshoe" shaped resaca as well as the Lozano Banco Resaca (behing the new Education & Business Complex). The Lozano Banco Resaca already has a 300 foot bridge that connects the Business & Education Complex with the rest of the university. The new Fall 2005 Issue of the university's newspaper Orange and White (the new online issue isn't up yet) shows the beautifull bridge with students crossing it. I've been on it many times and just love the view of the resaca, the many species of birds, turtles, fish, and the campus. See the view of the UTB/TSC for better reference. Then from here, the College Park trail would connect with the Lincoln Park located next to the levee and the Los Tomates Int'l Bridge. It also has its own hike & bike trail but only about 0.25 or 1/4 mile long. College Park would eventually connect with the Historic Battlefield Hike & Bike Trail through downtown but I'm not exactly sure which streets would be used for the connection.

Paseo de la Resaca Park Hike & Bike Trail

And finally, the last segment of the hike and bike trail is the Paseo de la Resaca Hike and Bike Trail. This trail is very nice because of its many bridges over man-made resacas that when stretched, would cover about seven miles of trail. The resacas have a "finger like" shape to them because you have one main resaca and "fingers" sprouting from the main one. See the drawing of the Paseo de la Resaca to get an idea of what I'm talking about: Paseo de la Resaca. The trail is part of the larger picture of the Paseo de la Resaca. Bewteen the corner of Paredes Line Rd (FM 1847) and FM 802 and the corner of Hudson Blvd and FM 802 (see above link for map) will be the featured Village Center. The Village Center is a Power Center that will have retail, restaurants, and a 150 room hotel some of which will line the resaca for a beautiful vista. Click here to see a preliminary design of the Village Center. Once it is completed within the next five years or so, the view from the trail as your jogging in this area will be magnificent. Mr. Hudson (Managing Director of the Paseo de la Resaca) envisions a San Antonio style river walk once completed. Already there is a Bank of America and a Wendys located there and hopefully more will come in the near future.

Trails, Trails Everywhere!

Once all the trails mentioned above have been completed, Brownsville residents will definately benefit and make our city even more beautiful and pedestrian friendly. Those living within a quarter mile from these trails can use it to go to work, school, shopping, or just travel from one side of the city to the other, either by walking, jogging, or bicylce! Brownsville was definately due for something like this. Ever tried walking in the north part of Brownsville? I have and it sucks!! These trails will make it easier and safer to traverse Brownsville in a healthy way.

Now, if only the city's Historic Battlefield Hike and Bike trail could add bridges to go over the dangerous boulevards and roads as mentioned earlier. Welcome Brownsville to the healthier 21st Century!



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1:38 PM  
Blogger Mayra said...

Wow very impressive! It kind of reminds me of the trails back in Austin. It would be nice to have some nice areas to walk by. I can't imagine the trail running parallel to the freeway though. That would be weird, having to cross Boca Chica Blvd.

8:16 PM  
Blogger TonyL said...

Thanks! Lets just hope that the city can find money to build bridges over these dangerous roads.

5:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I heard talk about soon getting solar lights along the bike true was that?

2:01 AM  
Blogger TonyL said...

I haven't heard anything about this. The idea is feasible and "green" as well.

Come to think of it, shouldn't all light posts be solar powered? Imagine how much money the city would save in one year worth of lighting?

7:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I use these trails all the time with my kids...not a soul in sight most Sundays. Brownsville fattest city in America.

2:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This trail now exists. I rode it last year, 2011. Great trail, wide, surfaced, covered rest areas. The Fort is also a nice place to see. This site needs to be updated.

12:53 PM  
Anonymous Chuy said...

SI ride this trail all the time its awesome. I usually take a ride all threw downtown then up north to Palo Alto battle field its a long ride but love it. I wish people could see how much history is here in Brownsville we are very lucky to have it in our back yard.

2:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have google mapped this trail and it looks pretty nice. Will be riding this in the very near future.
By the way, they should try and make a trail along old Military Hwy somehow. San Pedro, La Paloma, Los Indios and keep going all the way to the Santa Ana Refuge!
Being from San Antonio and loving our Mission Trail here I am proud of Brownsville to have made this trail! Cant wait to ride it!

10:03 PM  

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