De­signer: New Trail Un­like Any Other

McDonald County Press - - FRONT PAGE - Sally Car­roll

The new Pineville Bike Park and the ad­di­tion of a new walk­ing/ bike trail rep­re­sent a “gi­ant leap in the right di­rec­tion” for McDon­ald County, John Hunter said.

Hunter’s com­pany, Pro­gres­sive Bike Ramps, de­signed the bike park and trail. He’s en­cour­aged about the at­ten­tion both are gar­ner­ing.

“It seems that peo­ple from all over the four-state area are mak­ing their way to Pineville to check out the bike park,” Hunter said. “Once the word gets out about the new unique pump trail, it will cer­tainly get na­tional at­ten­tion from bik­ers and skaters who will want to make it part of their trip any­time they get even close to the area,” Hunter said.

The bike park opened July 10. Now, crews are fin­ished with the new trail and a date will be set soon to cel­e­brate its open­ing. The Pineville City Coun­cil cou­pled its ef­forts with many in the com­mu­nity to bring the ameni­ties to the area.

Hunter said the new as­phalt trail is a spe­cially de­signed trail not found else­where.

“This type of lin­ear pumpable trail does not ex­ist any­where else that I can think of,” Hunter said. “Many cities have pump tracks that are con­tained loops — but I don’t know of any that have a di­rec­tional pump trail like the one in Pineville,” he said.

The first part of the trail is flat,

un­til a biker or walker rounds the cor­ner and heads down­hill. “That’s when it gets fun,” Hunter said.

The trail fea­tures rollers that walk­ers can eas­ily ne­go­ti­ate. But bik­ers can use them to pro­pel them­selves down the trail by pump­ing.

The trail also fea­tures a jumpline, a 100 yard-long se­ries of rollers and kick­ers, which is con­structed so that a rider can “get air” and ramp from one sec­tion to the other.

In­ter­me­di­ate to ad­vanced riders will find that as­pect a lot fun.

Be­gin­ning riders also can take on the jumpline, but prob­a­bly won’t be catch­ing air, Hunter added.

The jumpline also has a walk­a­ble by­pass for pedes­tri­ans.

Af­ter the jumpline sec­tion ends, riders can en­joy the trail with rollers that have more space be­tween them.

The con­struc­tion project in­curred a few chal­lenges, as to be ex­pected with any large en­deavor.

“The soil on the site was great if you were a farmer — but not so great for com­pact­ing to build a trail,” Hunter said. “This meant we had to bring in quite a bit more sub-base than orig­i­nally planned.”

Crews ad­dressed a few ar­eas where wa­ter drained across the trail. One such area was built up, then fin­ished off with a new 12-foot-long steel bridge with cedar deck­ing.

The spe­cialty crew that worked on the trail pre­vi­ously con­tracted work for for­mer NFL quar­ter­back David Carr.

With all the hard work com­plete, of­fi­cials will open the new trail soon.

When that hap­pens, Hunter be­lieves the new ameni­ties will con­tinue to draw peo­ple to the area.

“If McDon­ald County con­tin­ues to in­vest in qual­ity recre­ational ex­pe­ri­ences and in­fra­struc­ture, more peo­ple will start to look north from Ben­tonville and south from Jo­plin to visit and even re­lo­cate,” he said.

MEGAN DAVIS/MCDON­ALD COUNTY PRESS

City em­ploy­ees work to build an em­bank­ment around the pump track por­tion of the Pineville Bike Trail last week. When com­pleted, the trail will ex­tend from the Bike Park near Sugar Is­land to the heart of Pineville.

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