Association Forms Steele Creek Community Trail Committee
A group of residents has been meeting since last summer to promote
the creation of a trail system throughout Steele Creek. That
group formally was established as the Steele Creek Community Trail
Committee of the Steele Creek Residents Association last month.
envisions a system of 50 miles of trails that will connect neighborhoods, parks,
shopping, and employment centers within Steele Creek. The
development of a trail system will take years, but the community must
become proactive now and have plans in place while potential trail routes
are still available. Although much of Steele Creek is undeveloped,
this is changing rapidly as more and more residential and other
development is occurring and the amount of open space and other
vacant land is decreasing.
Factors related to
include the following:
Committee members have met with both Charlotte Department of
Transportation and the North Carolina Department of Transportation
officials about trails and bike lanes along roadways. Standard
sidewalks generally are unsuitable for bicycles. Ten-foot
wide asphalt trails are preferable but do not meet city standards.
The committee hopes that future roadway improvements will
incorporate bicycle-friendly facilities in their plans.
Possibilities include bicycle lanes and tunnels or bridges across
- Greenway trails.
The Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Department has
developed a Master Greenway Plan that identifies routes for future
greenways along stream corridors throughout the county. Two greenways on the master plan
follow Steele Creek from Brown-Grier Road south to the South
Carolina state line and Walkers Branch from Steele Creek Road
south to Steele Creek near the South Carolina state line. The
Committee plans to focus on these routes because they already have
been approved on the Master Greenway Plan, some land along the route
already is owned by the county, and various groups have endorsed
the plan. As land is developed along these stream corridors, the
committee will work with the developers to ensure land is set
aside for greenway trails.
- Utility easements. Trails could follow
easements along sewer lines and power lines. The committee plans
to contact utility companies concerning the possible use of their
easements for trails.
- Major developments. Three major new
residential developments in Steele Creek, Berewick, The Palisades, and The
Sanctuary, will have trail systems within them. The committee has
contacted all three about developing connectivity between those
trails and other potential trails within the community.
Neighborhood associations. Trails will run through
and near many Steele Creek neighborhoods. Participation by
homeowners associations and other neighborhood groups will help the
overall trail effort. Neighborhood groups may even adopt a segment
of trail to build or maintain.
- South Carolina trails. An extensive trail
system is being developed in the Tega Cay, Fort Mill, and Rock
Hill areas of
York County, South Carolina. If community trails in Steele Creek
connect to those, a powerful trail network would be available to
users from both sides of the state line. The mayor and town
manager of Tega Cay have endorsed the Steele Creek Community Trail
- Other parkland. Community trails could connect to
those in McDowell Nature Preserve, although bicycles would not
be allowed on trails within the preserve itself. Community trails also
could connect to trails within Thomas McCallister Winget Park, the new district park on the north side of Berewick,
and other county park facilities.
The development of a
trail system will involve numerous public and private agencies and
organizations. The Committee is developing variety of contacts to
encourage participation and endorsement in the creation of a trail
system in Steele Creek.
The Committee is developing a map showing all
potential trail routes as well the neighborhoods, commercial
centers, parks, and other facilities that the trail system will
connect. A next step will be to work to ensure that land along these
routes is dedicated or otherwise reserved for trail development.
If you would like to
help or learn more about the Committee, please contact them at
CommunityTrail@SteeleCreekResidents.org or visit their web
www.SteeleCreekTrail.org. The Community Trail System
will be a legacy for the children of Steele Creek. Consider
participating in this important community effort.