Fayetteville officials commemorated improvements to Old Wire Road near Gulley Park on Nov. 4 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and a speech from Mayor Lioneld Jordan.

The project added a two-way bike track separate from the road with a pedestrian walkway, Jordan said.

The project received approximately $2.4 million from a 2006 voter-approved bond and approximately $1.4 million from the Walton Family Foundation, Jordan said.

Based on recent electronic counts, the cycle track and sidewalk have had significant use during a 10-day period, with 915 total trips and a daily average of 83 trips a day, Jordan said.

Jordan expects the number of trips to increase in 2020 upon the completion of the Niokaska Creek Trail, he said.

The project at Old Wire Road serves as a way to connect Fayetteville’s more densely populated areas to the Razorback Greenway, said Brannon Pack, cycling coordinator for Experience Fayetteville.

The city is building a bridge to connect Gulley Park to the future Niokaska Creek Trail, said Fayetteville Trails Coordinator Matt Mihalevich.

More improvements for cyclists include bicycle specific signals at the crossing of township, which are the first to be installed in Arkansas, Jordan said. Improvements also include a wheelchair-accessible sidewalk elevated above the cycled track.

Additionally, construction workers repaved streets and major driveways, Jordan said. 

Fayetteville resident James Jones and his wife, Sally Jones, moved to Fayetteville from Little Rock for the bike trails and outdoor recreation options, and they are pleased with the new additions near Gulley Park, James Jones said.

James Jones thinks the new improvements give bikes peace of mind being separated from motorists, he said.

“I think it’s wonderful,” Sally Jones said. “It really brings the community together.”

Zachery Sutherland is a staff reporter for the Arkansas Traveler, where he has been a staff reporter since February 2019.

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