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Monroe looks for input on its public trails at meeting Sept. 21

MONROE — The city's parks department is interested in adding more trails and pathways in the city over the next 20 years.
They're holding a kickoff meeting about trails Thursday, Sept. 21 from 6 - 8 p.m. at Park Place Middle School, 1408 W Main St. City parks director Mike Farrell said children are welcome as families use trails. There will be pizza and refreshments.
The questions city parks planners have for the public are where to build them, what their surfaces should be and what amenities and services should
be along the trails. Do you like to walk or roll or bicycle? The city parks team would like to know.
Monroe has 12 miles of trails today.
Last year while studying parks, the top item people wanted was more trails and paths, Farrell said. He said Monroe has a vibrant trail system, “however a lot of those were built 20 to 30 years ago” during a growth spurt in the 1990s. The Fryelands, for example, has a popular paved trail alongside Fryelands Boulevard.
Monroe’s north end built up well after the 1990s. Adding trails in the northside will be one of the focal areas of the study, Farrell said. Improving and maintaining Monroe’s existing trails will be the other half of the equation.
Farrell can see bicycle repair stations at spots along trails, for example. Exercise stations and water fountains, too.
Looking beyond its borders, the plan takes into account two regional trails that will eventually connect to the city: The Snohomish River Regional Trail and the Snoqualmie Valley Trail.
The east-west river trail would run from Everett to Snohomish to Monroe. It would be built in two phases, with the link from Snohomish to Everett first. This project is in early design stages.
The Snohomish-to-Monroe link would enter Monroe near the intersection of U.S. 2 and Fryelands Boulevard. It would cut straight across the farmlands, versus following U.S. 2. The county has acquired the trail’s corridor, county parks planner Emily Griffith said.
The Snoqualmie trail, meanwhile, ties with King County’s 35-mile-long trail. It would enter at either Al Borlin Park or Lewis Street Park, Farrell said.
Inside Monroe, a riverfront trail from Sky River Park to Al Borlin Park to Lewis Street Park could create a riverwalk.
The Sept. 21 fall meeting is the start of getting the public’s voice. The parks department intends to hold similar future meetings this winter, spring and next summer as the public fills in more of the blanks about shaping the city’s trails plan. Ultimately, trails will have a whole section in the city’s much broader Comprehensive Plan, the big binder book that city planners will use as their guide for how the city develops over the next 20 years.
The city is contracting with McLeod-Reckord to develop the trails plan.




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