Kenwood Press

Serving the communities of Kenwood, Glen Ellen and Oakmont

email print
News: 09/15/2019

Family-friendly Glen Ellen bike trail proposed

Old idea gets a new lease on life

map of proposed bike path through Glen Ellen
Arthur Dawson decided back in 2010 that his community, Glen Ellen, needed a family-friendly bike path through the town, someplace he could ride with his small son and wife and feel comfortable. As a professional consultant on history and properties in the area, it didn’t take him too long to work out a path from Dunbar School, through town, through the Sonoma Developmental Center (SDC), all the way to Madrone Road.

The route barely touches Arnold Drive and is easily available to most people in Glen Ellen and Eldridge.

Dawson floated the idea with county powers a few years ago and he was encouraged to keep it up. Life, however, intervened, including the major fires of 2017, as well as a number of other important projects, but the pending transformation of the SDC grounds into public and private property has given the older plan a new lease on life.

Dawson presented his idea to the Glen Ellen Forum’s Sept. 9 meeting and it got a very friendly reception, although some people thought that existing plans for a Sonoma Valley bikeway were already underway.

The county-proposed 13-mile Sonoma Valley Trail, currently in the funding phase, would parallel Sonoma Highway from Melita to Agua Caliente roads.

“That major bikeway is for through cyclists and pedestrians and follows major roads and arterials,” Dawson said. “I’m proposing a community friendly path that avoids traffic wherever possible and will be comfortable for families and children.”

The county is currently entering into a three-year planning mode to determine just what to do with the SDC’s sprawling campus, a campus that includes over 750 acres of open spaces and another 140 acres of buildings in various states of disrepair. The county has received state funding to hire a consultant to develop a Specific Plan for the property, a plan Dawson hopes will include his proposed bike path.

The county has chosen one of three bidders on the Specific Plan project, but has not announced which one, pending ongoing contract negotiations, according to Permit Sonoma Deputy Director Milan Nevajda.

“We have an outstanding opportunity to establish a bikeway between Glen Ellen and Eldridge,” Dawson wrote in his proposal.

The proposed path would run more than four miles north from Madrone Road, linking residential neighborhoods to Sonoma Valley Regional Park, downtown Glen Ellen, and Dunbar Elementary School, at the other end.

“The bikeway will give everyone a chance to get out of their cars, reduce emissions, improve their health, and strengthen ties within our community,” said Dawson.


Recently Published:

10/15/2019 - Sonoma Valley fire squads get big grant
10/15/2019 - Rangers sue to stop theater expansion
10/15/2019 - Business as usual?
10/15/2019 - Rebuilding by the numbers
10/15/2019 - Dunbar alum chosen to fill vacant board seat
10/15/2019 - Recovering, reimagining, rebuilding
10/15/2019 - Scouting out a good spot...
10/15/2019 - Little pumpkins...
10/15/2019 - New council applications sought
10/15/2019 - A new vision for upper Sonoma Creek
10/15/2019 - Blessed are the Bernese...
10/01/2019 - School district looks to address declining enrollment, demographic changes
10/01/2019 - Finding the right road home – the big decision
10/01/2019 - Community leader, sage honored as parade grand marshal
10/01/2019 - GE developer told to change design
10/01/2019 - New council applications sought
09/15/2019 - New trails for Hood Park funded
09/15/2019 - Members sought for SDC planning team
09/15/2019 - Free food available for those in need
09/15/2019 - NOAA weather radio test successful in Sonoma Valley
09/15/2019 - Family-friendly Glen Ellen bike trail proposed
09/15/2019 - Ahoy! Yacht club hands out booty to the community
09/15/2019 - Reminder – Some areas at SDC not open to public
09/15/2019 - Jack London Park director moving on
09/15/2019 - North Valley MAC coming soon

Community Calendar

GE Forum Board Meeting
A walk honoring loss and resilience
Music at Oakmont presents pianist Michael Brown
Free food available for those in need
Cal Alumni Club Fall Dinner
Medicare Open Enrollment Mini-Fair
Seed propagation workshop at Quarryhill
Grab a map and hit the Art Trails!
Forest Therapy Walk
Ghosts of Sugarloaf/Fantasmas de Sugarloaf
Trees at Jack London Park

Weather Underground PWS KCAKENWO2