Residents can expect to soon have a fully-paved loop around Lake Fayetteville, thanks to a trail extension project that began last summer.
The project adds one mile of concrete to the paved 4.5-mile trail circling the lake.
Matt Mihalevich, city trails coordinator, said crews are currently working to finish packing the new gravel path before they begin the final paving process, which should begin sometime in the next couple of months.
“It really just depends on the weather at this point,” said Mihalevich.
The gravel path is currently open for use, but signs warn pedestrians and cyclists to travel at their own risk.
Before the new addition, trail users had to either stop and turn around or continue along a narrow dirt trail where the pavement ended on the south side of the lake near Veterans Memorial Park.
By design, the new section doesn’t interfere with the dirt trail which runs through the woods along the shoreline at the lake.
“Because of the deep ravines in the area, we had to design the new portion of trail to be a little further from the edge of the lake where the nature trail is,” said Mihalevich.
The work at Lake Fayetteville was estimated to cost $500,000, paid for in part by an $80,000 federal recreation grant administered by the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Department.
Once paving is complete, north Fayetteville trail users will have another project to look forward to called Clear Creek Trail. The 3-mile trail is currently under construction as part of the 36-mile Razorback Regional Greenway from Bella Vista to south Fayetteville.
Once complete, Clear Creek Trail will provide an east-west connection to tie Lake Fayetteville Trail to Scull Creek Trail.
The estimated year-long construction of Clear Creek Trail began in October.