Project connects westside communities of Marion County to downtown Indianapolis and Hendricks County
The Speedway Trails Association in partnership with the Indianapolis Department of Natural Resources (DNR), The Indianapolis Foundation, Central Indiana Community Foundation, the City of Indianapolis, the Town of Speedway and its Near West community partners will be hosting the ribbon cutting and official opening of a total 1.9-mile section of the B&O Trail on Monday, June 5 from 4:30-5:30pm at the B&O trailhead at 2732 W Michigan St, Indianapolis.
The B&O Trail is a multi-phased, rail-to-trail development project connecting westside communities of Marion County to downtown Indianapolis and Hendricks County.
The recently completed project extends the existing B&O Trail in Speedway to the east and west. The eastern extension adds 1.7 miles of new trail from Allison Way to Michigan St in Haughville. The western extension includes a new bridge over Eagle Creek, extending the existing trail 0.2 miles west to High School Rd.
The final connection to downtown Indianapolis will be a 1.0-mile protected bike lane along the improved Michigan Street corridor currently under construction and scheduled for completion in early 2024.
The next phase of development scheduled for completion in 2025 includes extending the B&O Trail west from High School Road an additional 3.15 miles to the existing 7.5 -miles of B&O Trail in Hendricks County. When complete, the B&O Trail corridor will offer trail users more than 15 miles of trail from downtown Indianapolis to the town of Tilden in Hendricks County.
Funding for the near west section of the B&O Trail was awarded to the Speedway Trails Association (STA), an active volunteer board that has been advocating for this trail since 2009, through the Governor’s Next Level Trail grant program. STA received more than $4.8 million from the DNR and an additional $2 million from the Connected Communities Initiative—an initiative of The Indianapolis Foundation and Central Indiana Community Foundation (CICF). Connected Communities is committed to significantly expanding and enhancing pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure in Marion County, focusing on improving access and opportunity for underappreciated communities. In April 2022, Lilly Endowment Inc. supported the initiative with a $25 million grant to CICF. Coordination and project management for the fundraising and completion of this trail was facilitated in partnership with the Connected Communities Initiative.
STA worked closely with community partners along the entire trail corridor and managed the multi-jurisdictional coordination required for a complex project that traverses through multiple neighborhoods, communities, towns, cities, and counties. This project is the result of the thousands of volunteers donating tens of thousands of hours over multiple decades advocating and fundraising for the B&O Trail. Come celebrate this momentous occasion.