Nov. 28, 2020 8:30p
(WGTD)---In two years, it might be possible to bicycle from the west end of Racine County to the Lake Michigan shoreline, virtually all off-street.
Racine County's budget for next year includes a $500,000 appropriation to help make possible the purchase of an abandoned, 11-mile long rail bed that stretches from Kansasville to Sturtevant. The acquisition will lead to an extension of the White River State Trail that ends near Burlington, according to Willie Karadis of the bike path advocacy group, "Rail to Trails." The 11-mile extension will fill a gap between the White River trail and existing paths that take riders through Racine all the way to the lake.
The appropriation--generated by county land sales and not property tax dollars--will be combined with $1 million from the state's Knowles-Nelson Stewardship program to complete the purchase of the old rail bed.
Racine County Executive Jonathan Delagrave, the Racine County Board and State Rep. Robin Vos have all played active roles in the project.
Karadis says the next steps involve applying for grants to pay for the design and construction of the new path.
Karadis talked about the project on a recent edition of WGTD's Morning Show.