Eastside Trail Construction Update

Work on the Eastside Trail has been progressing steadily through the summer. This transformative project will change the way people move around town, connecting neighborhoods to each other like never before and creating sorely needed public space that will redefine the city. We have been receiving many questions in person, through Facebook, Twitter and our website about the main thing on people’s minds – when will it open?! Short answer- early this fall, pending extreme weather and other conditions.

Eastside Trail looking north from Freedom Parkway
View of the Eastside Trail looking north from Freedom Parkway. To the left, the corridor has been preserved for future transit. Photo credit: Christopher T. Martin.

The project’s construction manager, the PATH Foundation, and the contractor, the Astra Group, have tackled most of the major obstacles, including the bridge over Ponce de Leon, the new bridge over Ralph McGill and the underground utility duct bank, and have poured more than half of the concrete on the trail itself. The duct bank is critical to providing both current and future utilities- in particular for lighting and transit- which will be built in subsequent phases of development. In addition, almost all of the retaining walls that preserve the width of the corridor for future transit have been completed.

Eastside Trail retaining wall through Virginia Highland
Retaining walls have been built to preserve the width of the corridor for greenspace, transit, and trails. Photo credit: Christopher T. Martin.

The summer months have been particularly challenging for construction due to extreme heat, which limited the amount of concrete that could be poured on a given day, and violent storms which caused significant soil erosion and mudslides. In addition, unrelated utility work inadvertently caused damage to parts of the already completed trail.

While it is frustrating to experience construction delays, we are working with PATH and Astra to deliver the the high quality project that has been envisioned. It is taking longer than anyone wants, but at the end of the day we want to create something that will last. We thank you for your patience.

Ponce de Leon bridge duct bank - May 2012
The duct bank that will carry utilities under the Eastside Trail bridge over Ponce de Leon Avenue. These utility conduits run the full length of the trail.

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