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Bicycle/Pedestrian bridge now open

Town of Farmville officials held a dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony for the newly completed Buffalo Creek Bicycle/Pedestrian Bridge and Trail Project on Friday, Oct. 18.

The new bridge and trail project that began last October connects the Dogwood Trail and the Sarah Terry Trail over the Buffalo Creek.

It also allows for quick and protected access to West Third Street.

The new connection between trails and sidewalks allows citizens, Centra Southside Community Hospital employees and visitors, and the Longwood University community to access the Barbara Rose John’s Farmville Prince Edward Community Library, skateboard park, picnic areas, the community fruit orchard, and doctors’ offices nearby.

“This project was identified on the town’s transportation plan, the VDOT six-year plan, and the Commonwealth Regional Council Bicycle Plan,” said Farmville Mayor, David Whitus during the dedication.

“A bicycle and pedestrian-friendly locality provides many benefits to residents and visitors.”

According to Whitus, the total cost of the project was close to $1.3 million.

The project financing came from several sources, including the VDOT Enhancement Program with a 20% local share amount, the VDOT Alternatives Program with a 20% share, and local funding from the town.

The local share amount for the Buffalo Creek Bike/Pedestrian Bridge and Trail Connections is $308,336.

“Walking and biking enhance the quality of life for everyone,” added Burt Dodson, Commonwealth Transportation Board, Lynchburg District representative. “Health activities will increase economic benefits for the area as visitors seek opportunities to enjoy the beauty in our Commonwealth. I have no doubt that this bridge and trail will be enjoyed for many years to come by everyone regardless of age.”

Phase two of the project will connect the Dogwood Trail and the Sarah Terry Trail via a protected crosswalk across West Third Street under the West Third Street vehicular bridge to connect to the Highbridge Trail State Park.

According to Interim Town Manager, Dr. C. Scott Davis, no projected start time has been determined for phase two.