LaCroix Trail upgrades rely on further funding

LaCroix Trail upgrades rely on further funding

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - If you are one of the many taking advantage of the weather to get outdoors, perhaps you've noticed the Cape LaCroix Trail could use a little work.

On the City of Cape Girardeau's website is a 40-page master plan detailing the shortfalls and potential improvements for the LaCroix Trail.

It includes plans for new signs, lighting, drinking fountains and more. But you don't see those things along the trail right now.

"Definitely is a nice thing to have," said Edward Henry. "Where I come from there's a trail that's one about 1 mile long. And just going on a 1 mile loop gets kind of boring."

The 6.2 mile trail through the City of Cape is used for biking, running and walking dogs.

Officials say it's a great asset to get people outside, but the landscape of the trail hasn't changed much over the years.

The trail has been here for two decades, but it hasn't been forgotten.

The Parks Department spends a lot of money every year on upkeep, but they say it's difficult financially to add in new features.

However, there is one new thing for people to look forward to along the trail at Arena Park.

Construction crews have already marked off a new fitness area and that construction will begin Thursday.

Officials say they would like to add more things if money allows.

"We would like to do what we call side loop areas like here at Osage or Arena Park area where a detour surrounds the park and goes through different areas," said Park Division Manager Brock Davis. "We would like to connect more of our parks."

But these trail improvement projects cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.

The trail was funded through a storm water tax, which won't be available to the Parks Department until 2018.

Grant money can be difficult to come by.

While many say the trail is a great improvement to the area, it still needs some work.

"I have noticed during heavy rain there's a lot of mud that tends to build up on the trail," said Henry.

Other users say safety can be an issue. Some areas aren't well lit and the sidewalk is pretty narrow.

The department says when the money is there a permanent fix is a top priority.

"For us maintenance wise, we spend so much money on erosion areas but with the rain that we've had it's really hard to keep up with it," said Davis.

The new installation at Arena Park will have actual work out equipment where people can stop and lift weights along the route.

That work should be done sometime July.

The Parks Department has a vision for the whole trail network.

Still, as for other improvements, those will come if and when more money is available.

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