A long-range plan to connect the Metroparks and other natural areas in the Oak Openings Region of Western Lucas County with a multi-purpose trail is a step closer.
The Board of Park Commissioners has approved building a 1.9-mile trail connecting Secor Metropark in Berkey to Wiregrass Lake Metropark in Spencer Township, with 75 percent of the cost to be paid for with a grant from the Clean Ohio Fund.
The trail, expected to open in summer 2018, will connect the existing All Purpose Trail at Secor with the entrance to Wiregrass Lake. It will be 12 feet wide for most of that length, with 10-foot-wide sections of boardwalk made of concrete spanning sensitive wetland areas. The trail will be mostly on Metroparks-owned land, much of it acquired since 2002. The exception is a short section along the right-of-way on Dorr Street.
The Secor-to-Wiregrass connection is the first leg of what will eventually be an approximately 13-mile trail extending to Oak Openings Preserve in Swanton. Oak Openings already connects with Fallen Timbers Battlefield and Side Cut Metroparks in Maumee via the north fork of the Wabash-Cannonball Trail.
Dave Zenk, executive director of Metroparks Toledo, said the project is an important step in the park district’s ongoing plans to connect parks to parks, and people to parks.
“We are getting very close to being able to say that no matter where you live in Lucas County, you are never more than 5 miles from a Metropark,” Zenk said. “The other part of that vision is that the parks will be connected with trails, adding even greater accessibility and value across the county.”