VOL. 17 ISSUE NO. 34   |   AUGUST 24 - 30, 2011

AUGUST 24, 2011

Bridging the Gap

PHOENIX – It’s only four-feet wide, but its impact will be far wider and profound. In fact, the trail crossing Beardsley Canal Bridge will open up hundreds of miles of parks within Maricopa County, linking Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area to Lake Pleasant Regional Park.

On August 3, the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously to allow the Maricopa County Parks and Recreation Department to enter into a License Agreement with the Maricopa County Water Conservation District to accommodate the use of a four foot wide trail crossing of the Beardsley Canal Bridge and Right-of-Way for the trail improvement project for the Maricopa Trail.

“Approving the license between the agencies allows the department to install trail crossing signs and a cross-walk at the Beardsley Canal Bridge. This is the only crossing of its kind within the Maricopa Trail System and we’re pleased we were able to work with the Maricopa County Water Conservation District to identify and secure a safe passage point for hikers traveling along the Maricopa Trail to cross the canal,” stated Maricopa County Supervisor Max Wilson, District 4.

Although the perpetual agreement between the agencies took several years to craft, no fees were incurred by the department. “This connection is a critical link for the Maricopa Regional Trail System,” added Supervisor Andy Kunasek, District 3. “Adding this connection allows those using the 157-miles of completed trails to go from the Spur Cross Ranch Conservation Area all the way to Lake Pleasant Regional Park,” he added.

"MWD realizes this agreement is a big step forward in the development of the trail system," said James Sweeney, General Manager of the Maricopa Water District. "The District and Maricopa County are separate organizations, with separate public missions, but MWD wants to participate and assist Maricopa County in its goal to serve the residents and taxpayers of the west valley. We are proud of this cooperative effort and partnership."

The Maricopa Regional Trail System, once completed, will link Maricopa County’s ten regional parks together and create recreation corridors to connect people and open space. The trail system is expected to be approximately 1,521-miles long. The Maricopa Trail System, the County’s portion of the trail system, is approximately 340-miles.

For more information, visit the website at www.maricopa.gov/parks, or phone
(602) 506-2930.

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