Lake Link Trail Design – Phase I

The team of Palmer Engineering and J.D. Williamson Construction Company was the successful bidder for a design-build project to construct 2,200′ of recreational trail in the City of Cleveland. The trail extends from Columbus Road to the existing Ohio & Erie Canal Trail on the west bank of the Cuyahoga River, and is a key section of the 1.3 mile Lake Link Connector Trail, which will ultimately connect the Ohio and Erie Canal Trail at the southern end of the Scranton Peninsula with Cleveland Metroparks Wendy Park on Whiskey Island. The alignment winds through varied topography, which includes previously redeveloped parkland, industrial property, and a heavily wooded area where debris had been dumped.

The project included a 10′ wide asphalt trail; timber railing; extensive grading and clearing of vegetation; removal of existing debris along the proposed alignment; drainage improvements in low-lying areas near Carter Road; an at-grade intersection with Carter Road, including associated ADA ramps; signage and pavement marking; a retaining wall using salvaged stone abutment units; and two bridges spanning the Flats Industrial Railroad and Scranton Road.

Both bridges are prefabricated steel trusses, with span lengths of 161′-9″ and 172′-10″.  Three existing stone masonry abutments from demolished railroad bridges were retrofitted for the new bridges, and one new abutment was constructed. Geogrid reinforcement of the embankment was also used for the new abutment to bridge soft subgrade material.

Palmer Engineering coordinated extensively with multiple agencies and stakeholders, including J.D. Williamson, Cleveland Metroparks, the City of Cleveland, and Industrial Flats Railroad, to develop a functional, constructible and aesthetically pleasing project that met a diverse range of expectations.