New construction at Phelps Grove Park to provide a connection to the Fassnight Greenway trail


SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) – Improvements in and around the Springfield Art Museum and Phelps Grove Park entered a new phase this week with news of particular interest to those who walk, jog or bike in the area as construction began on a new east-west concrete path that will provide a connection to the Fassnight Greenway trail.

The new trail connection will begin at Clay Avenue, continue east through Phelps Grove Park, and end at Brookside Drive near the main entrance to the art museum. The new 1,600 linear foot trails will include ADA ramps and connect to shared bike lanes on Brookside Drive via a new pedestrian bridge.

The new trail, expected to take four months to build at a cost of $460,000, will then connect on the west side of Phelps Grove Park to the Fassnight Creek Greenway Trail, which was also recently renovated and widened as it passes under Jefferson, Bennett and Campbell Avenues in Fassnight Park, which is next to Parkview High School.

This greenway also interacts with other pedestrian and cycling projects.

“It intersects with the Link, which is the (8 miles long) north-south bike path that runs through the center of Springfield,” said Jenny Fillmer Edwards, public information administrator for the Springfield County Park Board- Greene. “And eventually it will connect on the west side to Grant Avenue, where all the exciting new developments are happening along the proposed Grant Avenue Parkway.”

Springfield has over 100 miles of greenway trails, and the hope is to eventually have them all interconnected.

Walkers at Phelps Grove Park reacted positively to the news.

“It’s such a great thing for them to do, especially when they haven’t had to,” Andrea Roberts said. “I grew up in San Antonio, Texas, and we didn’t have the wonderful parks that they have here in Springfield with the trail system. I have enjoyed it over the years with my four children, and now I have grandchildren. It’s wonderful to have well-maintained trails and it feels like you’re in the countryside even when you’re in town.

Mark Ferguson was walking with his adult daughter Lisa.

“I love nature and the Ozarks,” Mark said. “The weather is nice, here.”

“I think we need to take advantage of the beautiful scenery we have here, and few cities have the parking space that we have,” Lisa added. “We have to exploit it, improve it and take care of it. Enjoying nature and breaking away from city life is therapeutic. And every time I’m with my dad, it gets better.

“Phelps Grove Park is hands down one of Springfield residents’ favorite parks,” Edwards said. “A lot of people go around this park for dog walks and daily walks every day. But being able to get around the city and get from point A to point B using the trial network and the on-street bike network is just one improvement for our whole city. And we want people to know that the circular trail around Phelps Grove will not be interrupted by this construction project, nor do we anticipate any impact on trees. Those are two things that are really important to people who love this park.

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