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County signs agreement for bike lane
September 05, 2013 Jerry Purvis   

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With approval from the Scotts Bluff County Commissioners, a project to extend a bike and pedestrian lane around the Scotts Bluff National Monument area can continue.

The agreement, called NE FLAP 31099, has what has been called “convoluted” history. Bob Bennett, the county’s superintendent of public works, said the county and the City of Gering was to pay 20 percent of the $400,000 project, with the federal government picking up the rest.

Originally the county had planned to do in-kind work for their share. But the feds later said the county needed to come up with some cash for a portion of their share. That would mean $5,000 from both Gering and the county, in addition to their in-kind contribution.

“I agree with Gering Mayor Mayo that $5,000 is nothing for a project that size,” Bennett said.

The proposed bike/hiking trail will extend from the visitor center at the Monument, then east on Old Oregon Trail to the Legacy of the Plains Museum, then head north, meandering along the ravines, and connecting with the U St. Pathway in Gering. A newer inclusion, for a later date, would have the pathway cut across Old Oregon Trail at the West Lawn Cemetery area and head south toward the Five Rocks Amphitheater.

Eventually, the plan is to extend the pathway west through Mitchell Pass to Highway 92 and back to the Riverside Zoo to connect with the Monument Valley Pathway.
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