Tag Archives: bicycling

Rock Island Spur of Katy Trail State Park Grand Opening in Pleasant Hill, Missouri

On a chilly afternoon in December, a large crowd of supporters and enthusiasts gathered in downtown Pleasant Hill, Missouri, to witness Governor Jeremiah (Jay) Nixon cut the ribbon to dedicate the Rock Island Spur of Katy Trail State Park — the former Rock Island Railroad bed converted to a 47.5 mile crushed-rock trail — that connects to the famed Katy Trail at Windsor, Missouri and continues across the state to St Louis.

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon and trail supporters cut ribbon at dedication of Rock Island Spur

The Rock Island trailhead is located at 308 W. Commercial street adjacent to the Cass County fairgrounds. The city of Pleasant Hill has been positioning itself to be a ‘trail town’ in preparation for this marked progress.

“The opening of the Rock Island Spur of Katy Trail State Park is a historic moment in our community,” said Mayor Chris J. Hicks. “Our residents and businesses have waited for many years to see this day. We are ecstatic to be the western anchor to the newest state park and cannot wait to welcome trail riders to our hometown. On this monumental day, we also look to future developments of the Rock Island Trail corridor by our many partners.”


To complement the Rock Island trail, Pleasant Hill has constructed the MoPAC trail — stretching from the state trailhead northwest to Pleasant Hill City Lake. City leaders and partners have supported the Rock Island trail’s development for years, and recently new businesses have opened in anticipation of trail-related tourism.

Plans are underway to extend the path from Pleasant Hill  all the way to the Truman Sports Complex in Jackson County by 2018. Once complete, the county’s leg is expected to tie in to the heart of the MetroGreen™ Regional Greenway system’s more than 350 completed miles, making it possible to ride or walk from Kansas City to St. Louis.

View our Rock Island Spur grand opening Flickr album »

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Cycling and Recycling

The MARC Solid Waste Management District  administers an annual grant program that awards funds to local communities and organizations for waste reduction and recycling-related projects. From time to time, we publish updates about recent grant recipients.

Photo of bicycles collected by Revolve at a local recycling extravaganza.

Since 2009, Revolve has contributed to the regional effort to make the Kansas City area a more bicycle-friendly community with its Earn-A-Bike and other programs.The shop has also contributed to local waste diversion efforts by partnering with local communities to collect old, unwanted or broken bicycles during municipal recycling events. When possible, bicycles are refurbished and given back to the community. Bicycles that can’t be refurbished are stripped for usable parts and the metal is recycled.

The district was pleased to provide grant funding to the Revolve bike recycling project in 2012 and 2013. Grant funds helped support a program administrator and a part-time bike mechanic. In 2012, 11 bike collection events diverted 828 bikes from landfill disposal, and in 2013 the organization diverted more than 700 bikes. That’s 17.6 tons of diverted bikes! Revolve has partnered with Lee’s Summit, Lake Lotawana, Gladstone, Parkville, Raytown and other communities for these collection events.

Revolve always needs more bicycles. Visit the organization’s website or Facebook page for more information about donating a bike or money, purchasing a used bike, the Earn-A-Bike program, and Revolve’s bicycle safety training programs.

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Don’t start your engine — outfit your bike instead

bike-69078_1280_edit_webSometimes there is nothing more enjoyable than a recreational bike ride on a nice day. However, bikes were invented for utility purposes. Today, more and more people are using bicycles to transport cargo and commute to work. With the right setup, you can bike with everything from groceries to computers, and even extra passengers like children and dogs.

Vehicles emit a higher rate of pollution when warming up as compared to the rest of the trip.  By using a bike for short errands — and therefore reducing the number of vehicle starts — you’ll help improve our air quality.

The easiest way to get your bike cargo-ready is with bags, racks and trailers, which can be mounted on most existing bikes. If you’re transporting a heavy load, you may need a small electric motor installed on your bike to help you up hills. These motors can be installed on nearly any bike, and charge up in just a few hours.

Many major bike manufacturers now sell cargo bikes, some with extended frame bikes that can haul up to 200 lbs. However, since most bikes can be converted into cargo bikes, there’s no need to buy new — a used bike will work just as well. Local bike shops are great places to find used bikes, as well as cargo holders, electric assist motors and bike tools.

If you need any inspiration using your bike for cargo, see how much fun people in this community have using their cargo bikes for school commutes, work trips and everything in between.

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Celebrate National Trails Day, Saturday June 1!

National Trails Day art, by Mid-America Regional CouncilCommunities around the Greater Kansas City region will celebrate National Trails Day 2013 on Saturday, June 1, bringing together outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds to celebrate the U. S. trail system.

Traditionally held each year on the first Saturday in June, National Trails Day was established to recognize the value of recreational trails and the people involved in building and maintaining them.

Local cities and municipalities mark National Trails Day by holding public events such as walking and biking activities, trail openings, family entertainment and educational seminars.

To view regional event details, visit the MetroGreen NTD page.

Have photos from your community’s event? Add them to our Flickr MetroGreen pool!

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