City officials work to design another phase of Circle Trail

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Wichita Falls city officials are one step closer to construction beginning on the hike and bike circle trail from Lake Wichita Park to Larry’s Marina.

Back in 2017, Wichita Falls city officials applied for funding for three sections of trail through the TxDOT step grant program. The city received that grant and now is working to get the designing process started on the last of the three project trails to have that done.

It will run from Lake Wichita Park to Larry’s Marina. Owner Rodney Brown said there are still some questions from neighbors in this area.

“What I’ve been told, it’s not going to affect my business,” Brown said. “If that’s the case then I’m fine with it. Other people that I’ve talked to that are opinionated about it, that is negative about it, it’s because they are concerned about the trail might be 20 feet from the back of their house.”

Director of Public Works Russell Schreiber said they originally wanted to keep this project in house with the engineering department. After losing the engineer that could do this project, he requested about $220,000 from the 4B sales tax corporation board that would potentially go to an outside company.

“We think we’ve got some really good candidates that could probably do this work,” Schreiber said. “It’s just a timing matter. We need to get started on the design to meet TxDOT deadlines. If we can hire someone then we won’t tax the 4B board with this request.”

Brown said he feels because Wichita Falls has such a big biking community these trails will be good for the city.

“Living out here and stuff and see the bikes and stuff that come up and down Lake Shore Drive it’s a very big asset to Wichita Falls,” Brown said. “If you are talking about 20 years ago or 25 years ago it wasn’t. But now you go out every day you’ll see, I mean on this road here I guarantee you I could count 40 bikes a day.”

Once the trail is designed, Brown said he and other Lake Shore Drive residents will have their concerns answered.

The other two trail projects still not complete are designed and one of them is up for bid. The deadline for the Lake Wichita Park and Larry’s Marina project to be under construction is Oct. 6, 2020. The other two trails are from Barnett Road to Seymour Highway and Loop 11 to Lucy Park.

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