Last updated: December 18. 2013 11:40PM - 353 Views
Ryan Carpe, Staff Writer

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DARKE COUNTY – The Darke County Board of Commissioners approved a request for easement on behalf of the Darke County Park District on Wednesday, in order to continue pursuit of a county-wide multi-use bike trail.

Roger Van Frank, Darke County Park District Director, was in attendance to explain the benefit that the bike trail would bring to the area.

The 15-year easement would apply to property located near Wayne Industries, which would provide a benefit to the community and the business, stated Van Frank, by providing additional green space and recreational routes.

The stretch of the bike path being discussed on Wednesday was referred to as “Phase 4,” which would extend from State Route 571 to Ohio Street in Greenville.

The Darke County pathway is in part being funded through the Clean Ohio Fund, which aims to restore, protect, and connect Ohio’s important natural and urban places by preserving green space and farmland, improving outdoor recreation, and cleaning up brownfields to encourage redevelopment and revitalize communities.

The Darke County Park District is currently working with the City of Greenville and Darke County Engineer’s Office to draft the plans and construct the path, which is designed to provide a scenic route beginning in Bradford, running to Greenville and ending in Union City (or vice versa) in the next five to eight years.

“So far things are progressing along. We could end up in the next two-year period with about two and a half to three miles of paved bike paths, which would be great. And that would bring us up to almost 12 miles of trail,” said Van Frank.

In addition, the commissioners approved writing a letter of recommendation on behalf of the project.

The commissioners also approved a resolution funding the 2014 County Public Defender Commission and Indigent Legal Assistance Fund for 2014 in the amount of $270,000 annually with monthly payments of $22,500 on Wednesday.

During Monday’s session, the commissioners approved a proposal with Stantec to perform an Environmental Site Assessment for property related to the development of the Darke County Airport.

The site assessment is required to be performed in order for the land to be purchased under a 2014 Federal Aviation Administration Grant. The cost is not to exceed $3,570, which amounts to $3,250 in labor and $500 in expenses.

The commissioners also approved a designation agreement between the Darke County Board of Directors Solid Waste Management and Randolph Farms, Inc. in Modoc, Ind., effective Jan, 1, 2014 through Dec. 31, 2018.

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