Drawing courtesy of Town of Christiansburg
Phase III of the Huckleberry Trail (red outline) could start later this year and run through the Oak Tree subdivision and then to the rear of the Christiansburg High School athletic fields (upper right in overhead conceptual).

Christiansburg – Christiansburg leaders are moving ahead with a plan for Phase III expansion of the Huckleberry Trail. Town Engineer Wayne Nelson told council last week that the trail would be expanded from the Food Lion shopping center on North Franklin Street through the Oak Tree subdivision and then to Christiansburg High School.

The expansion is .857 miles and will route at the rear of the high school’s athletic fields then northwest to a path along North Franklin, stopping at the Independence Blvd. intersection.

Nelson said with this expansion, the trail will now have a length of 4.17 miles within the town’s boundaries.

For now, the town does not know the overall cost of the expansion. But Nelson said approximately $450,000 was left over from Phase II.

“We think that will be enough, but we will have the design done so we can come back with a final amount,” he said. There is a possibility for additional grants from the state if it becomes necessary.

The Montgomery County school system has also signed off on the route. Initially, the town had wanted to take the path up and over a hill above North Franklin, but Nelson said that would be more costly and would affect future building plans the school system has on the table.

In addition to the new section, Nelson said the town is also looking at putting a path down Independence Boulevard that would come back to the trail so students could use the path once completed. He expects the expansion project could go out to bid in December.

Nelson was also quizzed by council on the work of the trail from Cambria Street to the Food Lion shopping center.

A contractor will be making final repairs to the newest portion, which runs from Providence Boulevard to the Food Lion Shopping Center.

“Fill material has failed along that part of the trail. So, we have to close it, and the contractor is coming back and making needed repairs. That part of the trail remains closed at this time,” he said.

The current construction is scheduled to be finished by the end of the month.

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