New trail connection near Issaquah wrapped, signed and delivered
Just in time for the holidays, hikers and cyclists found a present under the trees near Issaquah today: a new trail connection parallel to I-90.
The I-90 Highpoint-to-Preston Trail provides a 1.25-mile section of regional trail that connects the Issaquah-to-Highpoint Trail just short of the Preston-Snoqualmie trailhead. Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) worked with the Mountains to Sound Greenway, a nonprofit conservation trust, to relocate the existing bike and hike route from the shoulders of busy High Point Way and westbound I-90 to a non-motorized trail safely away from traffic.
“This major accomplishment helps fill a critical missing trail link between Highpoint and Preston,” said Cynthia Welti, Executive Director of the Mountains to Sound Greenway Trust. “Not only will this trail provide a safer travel option for recreational users and commuters, but it helps connect the regional trail system in the Mountains to Sound Greenway.”
King County will maintain the new trail, which is now part of the King County Regional Trails System.
As part of the project, crews planted more than 200 Douglas Fir and Western Red Cedar trees, and more than 5,200 shrubs. Even more trees and shrubs will be planted in January.
“This new trail isn’t just about providing a safe connection between two regional trails; it’s also about protecting the environment,” said John Chi, WSDOT Construction Project Engineer. WSDOT constructed a new pedestrian bridge along the trail and upgraded a railroad trestle over East Fork Issaquah Creek to protect the creek and nearby wetlands from foot and bike traffic. New retaining walls reduce the trail’s footprint and minimize environmental impacts.
The Washington Legislature allocated most of the funding for this $4.6 million project in 2007. For more information go here.