Swamp Rabbit grows

Citizens committee formed to discuss future segments

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Once completed, the Swamp Rabbit trail will be a 22-mile greenway that parallels the Reedy River from Travelers Rest to Lake Conestee. Greg Beckner / Staff

While work has started on the third phase of the Swamp Rabbit Trail within the city limits of Greenville, a citizens committee has been formed to work with consultants studying possible ways to link that part of the trail with the county recreation department’s trail from Lake Conestee to Parkins Mill Road and Interstate 85.

The newest phase of the Swamp Rabbit Trail will go from a 170-foot pedestrian bridge over the Reedy River along Cleveland Street to South Pleasantburg Drive, said Brian Graham, the city’s greenway and sustainability manager.

The project will cost about $1.5 million.

The project will extend the Swamp Rabbit Trail nearly another mile.

Some of the base layer of asphalt for the path will be put down before cold weather hits, Graham said, but the trail will not officially open until a final layer of asphalt is laid in the spring.

The work could be finished by June.

The Swamp Rabbit Trail is 13.5 miles long and goes from Travelers Rest to Greenville. Some portions follow abandoned railroad corridors while others meander through wooded flood plains.

Most of the new section of the trail will look like a glorified sidewalk with a strip of grass between the road and the trail.

Parts of the trail on the Greenville Tech campus will meander through treed areas.

“We’re getting the path off the road where we can. Where we can meander, we’re meandering,” Graham said.

Some points of the trail are 8-feet wide, while others are up to 14-feet wide.

Once completed, the trail will be a 22-mile greenway that parallels the Reedy River from Travelers Rest to Lake Conestee.

The Greenville County Recreation District is nearing completion of a project to extend trails from the Lake Conestee Nature Park to Parkins Mill Road at Interstate 85.

How the path will link up the new city section and the county’s section of trail has sparked controversy among Parkins Mill Road residents who say they do not want the trail to run through their residential neighborhood. They said they are concerned about property values, privacy and liability issues.

Mayor Knox White has told Parkins Mill residents there are no plans to run the trail down the street.

White said the citizens committee would work with city staff and consultants who are looking at options for that final leg. No decisions have been made and construction is probably three to five years off.

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