Comments sought on Western Canal path - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

Comments sought on Western Canal path

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Posted: Friday, March 27, 2009 3:59 pm | Updated: 1:27 am, Sat Oct 8, 2011.

As construction continues on the Western Canal multiuse path, Chandler residents will get a chance to see plans for the next phase.

Crews started work in February on a 10-foot-wide concrete bicycle and pedestrian path on the south side of the Western Canal that runs three miles between the Hamilton Street alignment to the east and Loop 101 to the west.

Chandler plans to enhance the adjacent retention basin and upgrade sections of the wall along the path. According to one city document, the walls will be a "more decorative, unifying sight." Repairs will be made and new paint is planned.

Click on map to see a larger version

Western Canal multiuse path

Bart Brown, the city's landscape architect on the plan, started with the project about a year ago.

"With improvements, I think it could be a valued pathway, especially connecting with Tempe's and Gilbert's pathways to be a pedestrian link," he said.

A community meeting is scheduled for April 7.

The entire Chandler project is a $1 million undertaking. The shared-use path will feature rest stops and crosswalks. Most of the project is being funded by federal grants, with about $200,000 coming from the city.

Brown said plans not only address the aesthetics, but dust mitigation concerns.

"I tried to do something interesting," he said. "I'm using a new decorative block that within the unit almost looks like a wave."

The proposed plan includes solar lighting and Brown envisions circular disks that will glow and appear to be bubbles along the wave.

Because SRP power poles run along the Western Canal, the city is working with the utility company to address its needs, Brown said. SRP must have the ability to bring a vehicle down the path. Everything from access to the plants used must take that into consideration, Brown said.

"People need to understand, because of the utilities within that corridor, it's very restrictive for what we can put in there and where it's going," he said.

Brown wants to have a cohesive look along the pathway.

"It should be nice and create interest and be a place people might want to utilize," he said.

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