from Thunder Island in the Marine Park.
(Photos: Celilo Planning Studio)
A group of planning students at Portland State University need your help on an ambitious project that could lead to much better bicycling in the Columbia River Gorge.
The project, ‘Connect Cascade Locks’ is a joint effort between six students in PSU’s vaunted Masters in Urban and Regional Planning program (who call themselves Celilo Planning Studio) and the Port of Cascade Locks. The goal is to create a “regionally integrated” network of recreational trails that will help boost economic development in the community of Cascade Locks (about 43 miles east of Portland).
site visit to a trailhead.
Sara Morrissey, the communications person for Celilo Planning Studio, says the project will focus on both existing trails (like Trail 400, the new EasyCLIMB mountain bike trail, the Pacific Crest Trail and the Historic Columbia River Highway Trail) as well as the forthcoming, 25-mile off-road trail network we shared more about last year.
Last month, the PSU students joined Cascade Locks locals and a representative from the Tourism Commission for an up-close look at existing conditions. They walked across the ‘Bridge of the Gods,’ surveyed roadway interchanges, and hiked around the Pacific Crest Trail to get a better understanding of where and how biking and walking access could be improved.
In addition to the mountain bike trail network already in the works, the Port of Cascade Locks has won an FHWA grant to study improved bike access on the ‘Bridge of the Gods’ and, a few miles to the west, the State of Oregon has broken ground on 1.6 miles of a new trail.
Ritter, Sarah Bronstein, Michael Ahillen,
Danielle Fuchs, Sara Morrissey,
At this point, the PSU students need your help! They have launched an online survey to learn more about how people use existing trails and routes in the Gorge.
There’s exciting momentum afoot in the Gorge and this project could be the key piece that brings it all together. Please check out ConnectCascadeLocks.com to learn more, “like” their Facebook page, follow them on Twitter, and remember to take the survey and share it with your friends.