183A shared use path extended past Cedar Park Center

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by HEATHER KOVAR / KVUE News and photojournalist SCOTT McKENNEY

Bio | Email | Follow: @HeatherK_KVUE

kvue.com

Posted on January 22, 2013 at 7:31 PM

Updated Tuesday, Jan 22 at 7:41 PM

CEDAR PARK -- Five miles of a ten-foot concrete shared use path opened along 183A this weekend.

The new section runs from 1431 to Hero Way in Leander on the west side of the tollway. It runs in front of the Cedar Park Center where the Austin Toros and the Texas Stars play.

The path connects at 1431 with a 2.3 mile path opened in 2011.

At 1431, the path crosses under 183A and runs south on the east side of the tollway to Brushy Creek, where it connects to the Williamson County Trail System.

The 183A shared use path was built by the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority, which runs the toll road.

Director of Communications Steve Pustelnyk said building the tolls has been a main focus, and as a result, this path is an amenity.

"Because we're going through neighborhoods and disrupting those neighborhoods, we believe that bike facilities are an important part of our role in providing mobility, not just for drivers but for all users," Pustelnyk said.

Just last fall, the Mobility Authority and Williamson County opened a bridge linking the 183A path to the Brushy Creek Regional Trail.

People can park there, then trails take them southwest to the YMCA in Cedar Park, east towards Round Rock and now north to Leander.

Dale Morrison walks his dog on the trail three times a week.

"Here it's very safe for people to walk. It's good for handicapped people," Morrison said.

There are ADA compliant structures throughout the trails, such as bricks. Blind people can feel the bumps with their canes or their shoes and that lets them know that they are entering a roadway.

The cost of the newly opened five mile section was $3.1 million. Pustelnyk said mostly tolls paid the bill, along with some bonds, and state and federal money.

Pustelnyk said the Mobility Authority would like to eventually extend the trail to the Capital Metro Leander Rail Station and to the South San Gabriel River.

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