North Gill Street Regional Bike/Pedestrian Connector Now Open
State College, Pa – The Borough of State College and the Penn State University recently opened a multi-modal connector, shared-use path in the West End neighborhood of the Borough.
“The Borough of State College is excited to have this important connection to the regional bike system,” says State College Mayor Ron Filippelli. “Travelers can now travel on pathways from the West End of Campus to the Community Field near State High and then link up to the Westerly Parkway and Orchard Park Bike path. It is a great way to explore the Borough of State College. Our goal with this project is to increase the use of alternative forms of travel which help make our community healthier and more sustainable.”
This corridor provides an important connection for travelers, enhancing connectivity throughout the Borough of State College, Penn State University, and the expansive Centre Region regional bike path system.
“The Gill Street Path is a critical link in the regional bike network,” explains Centre Region Planning Agency Transportation Planner Trish Meek. “It builds a more a continuous, interconnected network of bicycle facilities which links neighborhoods, schools, and open space to Penn State University and provides an accessible and safe transportation alternative to residents in the Centre Region.”
This project first began in 2007 after the need was identified in the West End Revitalization Plan. The purpose of this plan was to develop a master plan for the revitalization of the designated Urban Village district through a process of consensus-building among key stakeholders including property owners, business owners, residents, municipal officials, and other interested community members. All stakeholders had a common vision of creating an attractive, mixed-use development that reflects the interests of and serves the needs of those who live and work there.
In 2014, the Borough secured $160,000 in grant funding from PennDOT to complete the project. Construction started in 2020 after the Borough worked with relevant stakeholders, including private property owners, to secure the right-of-way (ROW). The Borough received design support for the project from Penn State University.
“Penn State is committed to promoting and supporting the development of alternative means of transportation to and from the University Park campus,” says Penn State Office of Physical Plant Landscape Architect Tom Flynn. “This new connection onto West Campus provides a critical bicycle and pedestrian portal and furthers our collective efforts in providing a safe, convenient, and inter-connected bicycle and pedestrian network.”
If you would like more information about this event, please contact Douglas Shontz at (814)-278-4723 or email at [email protected].
IMAGE: ESTHER MATTHEWS