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MISSION

In 2021, a group of concerned and passionate citizens from the Mequon Thiensville area formed a committee, which in 2022 became a 501(c)(3) called MT Trails Foundation, Inc., whose mission is to develop and support a system of family friendly bicycling and walking off road trails throughout the Mequon and Thiensville communities. Their first project is to privately fund a safe, off road two directional shared use 10 ft wide paved bike/pedestrian path for approximately 1.5 miles along Highland Road from Rotary Park going west to the Ozaukee Interurban Trail (OIT) to connect families, children and visitors to Rotary Park, the OIT and the Town Center of Mequon/Thiensville.

The path is designed to be top quality, lasting 20 years. The 10 foot wide path has a 12 inch base of 1 ¼” aggregate base course, topped with 3” of HMA (Hot Mix Asphalt) Pavement 4LT 58-28S. The 2 ft shoulders will have the same 12 inch base with limestone screenings. So the final path will be 14 feet wide.

THE STORY

In Mid January 2021, Ayers Associates was contracted to design a preferred alignment plan for the proposed path, which was completed in April 2021.

Once it was determined the path would be feasible and received favorable feedback from homeowners the next steps were to obtain a topographical survey, wetland delineations and a survey. This was completed at the end of July 2021 and included the north side for the complete 1 ½ miles from Rotary Park to the OIT and also the south side from Green Bay Road to OIT to compare costs, since the utility poles switched to the north side of the road at that point after green bay road.
In August 2021 Ayers Associates was contracted to do a CADD draft and a 60% set of plans and profile sheets which identified the look and cost of the path and liens needed. This was received in early September 2021 and more detail talks were held with the landowners along the path. From those talks, it was determined to also perform a survey, wetland delineation and CADD draft and 60% set of plans for the remaining south side of Highland Road. Over $60,000 has been raised, primarily by the members of our committee, to fund these costs to date.

In January, 2022, the MT Trails Foundation applied for a Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) federal grant and is in the process of applying for other state and local grants to offset the estimated $1.2 million costs. It is anticipated $350,000 will still be needed from the community to complete the project. This is just $35 from every household in the Mequon/Thiensville community to get this first phase off the ground! All donations should be made through the Mequon Community Foundation designated to the Bike Path.

WAYS TO GIVE

Donations are accepted through our website and via mail. We also can accept gifts of appreciated stock.

Tap the LEARN MORE button below for more information about donating, or tap the DONATE NOW button to proceed directly to our online donation form and select "Bike Paths" in the dropdown menu for Area of Support.


LEARN MORE DONATE NOW

CELEBRATE TRAILS DAY 2022 RECAP

The Mequon Thiensville Trails Foundation, Inc. partnered with the Mequon Community Foundation and Rails to Trails Conservancy for Mequon/Thiensville's first annual national Celebrate Trails Day on Saturday, April 23, 2022. Held in the parking lot at Spur 16 in Mequon, right off the Interurban trail, local vendors were happy to help with the celebration. Wheel and Sprocket and Trailside Recreation offered bike maintenance and test rides of E-bikes and regular bikes, Fromm Foods gave away dog treats, CycleBar of Mequon was on site, the Wisconsin Bike Federation and the Mequon Community Foundation provided area trail maps and information about the new Highland Road Bike Spur and the Route of the Badger. Free Bier sampling was provided from Cafe Hollander, beverage giveaways from Daily Taco and swag from Rails to Trails and other refreshments added to the fun.

Members of the Mequon Thiensville (MT) Trails Foundation were able to connect with many passionate trail users from the community. Those participating in Foundation's survey overwhelmingly stated they would use the Highland Road bike/pedestrian spur if it were built. Almost $700 in donations was received during the 4 hour period. Donations received prior to the event from interested citizens were an additional $1,200.

Another few fun facts provided to the community were:

  • Printed maps from the Joint Mequon Thiensville Bike & Pedestrian Way Commission of on-road bike loops (4 mile, 8 mile, 10 mile and 17 mile) around the community. These routes can be viewed by clicking here.
  • Demonstrated bike maintenance kits that can be checked out from the Frank L. Weyenberg Library!

About the Ozaukee Interurban Trail

A continuation from the Oak Leaf that follows an old railroad line from Milwaukee to Sheboygan through Ozaukee County. At the end, if the 30 miles aren’t enough for your bike-loving booty, you can carry on to the Sheboygan Interurban Trail. The proposed 1 ½ mile Highland Spur will take you east to the lovely Rotary Park.

TOTAL COSTS

The Highland Bike Path Project consists of two phases.

Phase I will span from Rotary Park to Cedarburg Road. Phase II, if decided to do in the future, will consist of 310 feet of boardwalks and bridges going over Pigeon Creek. In the meantime, Phase I path users will use the existing paved walk onto a very wide bridge that connects with the interurban trail from Cedarburg Road to the OIT.


Construction of Path
$788,460Paving boardwalks and construction
$78,846Engineering (10%)
$118,269Contingency
$985,575Total Construction Cost of Path
Signal Beacon
$15,000LED lighted signal beacon with push button crosswalk
Endowment
$100,000Covers ongoing maintenance and snow removal
Engineering Preliminary Work
by Ayers Associates
$5,800Land architect preferred alignment plan
$18,800Topographical survey estimate
$5,750Wetland delineations
$12,000CAD drafting of a 60% set of plan and profile sheets
$42,350Total Engineering Preliminary Work Incurred


$1,142,925 TOTAL FUNDS NEEDED TO COMPLETE PHASE I

WHY COMPLETE THE PATH, AND WHO BENEFITS?

The scenic trails in the Mequon/Thiensville area are well loved by residents and visitors for their multiple healthy recreation uses (bicycling, walking, running, roller blading, etc.) and provision of a safe transportation network to adjacent communities.

Mayor, City of Mequon
Letter of Support

READ THE LETTER

Wisconsin Bike Federation
Letter of Support

READ THE LETTER
"I walk almost daily during my lunch hour from the Gentian Building over to Rotary Park and the Wooded trail. In fact my total walk is 3 miles in 55 mins and part of that I have to walk on the side of the road on Highland Rd to get there. The path would be such a major improvement as I would not feel like I am about to get killed or have to be on constant alert for cars from both ways not seeing me. The walking is an integral part of my life now as I have had several surgeries and need to stay active and mobile without being too radical. So walking is great and the 3 mile route is perfect during my lunch. I also bike after work sometimes too and use the Interurban bike trail path but do NOT feel at all comfortable riding a bike on Highland Rd to get to the path. I usually now have my bike on my car and drive the 3/4 mile to the path entrance and park my car and start the biking from there. I have done it from my office...but definitely do not feel comfortable being on Highland Rd with the traffic. So again, that would be a huge benefit. I bike during spring/summer/fall but I walk during all 4 seasons and having the path would be such an added benefit for myself and anyone else who walks (as I drive and see many ppl walking/running/biking)"

Lisa Sheridan, Director of Client Operations, Gentian Financial


"Rotary Park is one of the many gems in our community. As a parent of small children, accessing our community on foot or on bicycles is important to keep our kids safe and to encourage healthy lifestyles for generations to come. An off road path connecting the Ozaukee Interurban Trail and Rotary Park would not only provide a safe route for families to access Rotary Park, but would also connect people in North Mequon to the Town Center District and Thiensville businesses."

Sam Azinger, Resident/Rotarian, chair of Chair-Mequon Thiensville Biking/Pedestrian Joint Commission and President of Rotary Club of Thiensville/Mequon


"For decades Gathering on the Green has put on our flagship event in Rotary Park. The park is a jewel in our community and we love showing it off to those who come to our events. The possibility of a bike path that would connect Rotary Park to the Ozaukee Interurban Trail is a dream come true. It would enable many more people to safely discover and explore the fantastic asset of our park."

Rob Kos, Executive Director, Gathering on the Green


"Christ Alone Lutheran School sees the Ozaukee Interurban Trail as an asset for teaching our students about healthy living. Because it is located on the western edge of our property, we have easy access to it. We use the trail annually for our Run/Walk benefiting Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. We see the potential of using the trail for teaching about biking. Having the trail connect to Rotary Park would give a great destination and turn around point for our trips."

Paul Berger, Principal, Christ Alone Lutheran School in Thiensville


"The Police Department supports the creation of defining a space for bicyclists to ride and pedestrians to walk, to foster a safer environment for the traveling motorists and bicycles."

Mequon Police Chief Pryor


"Something additional like this path would definitely lure our cross country runners over there!"

Jay Fuller, Head Coach, Homestead Highlanders Cross Country

Interested in supporting this project?

GET INVOLVED!

We encourage all citizens that are passionate about creating safe bike and pedestrian paths around our community to help us with this effort. To get involved or to ask specific questions email info@mcfgives.org or call 262-238-2803. Your message will be relayed to the bike committee.

DONATE!

Tap the LEARN MORE button below for more information about donating, or tap the DONATE NOW button to proceed directly to our online donation form and select "Bike Paths" in the dropdown menu for Area of Support.