Master plan unveiled for walking, biking trails in Jackson County

The plan includes every city in the county

Gautier Walking Trail

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Those who love the outdoors are about to get more space to enjoy nature in the form of a master plan called the Bicycle, Pedestrian and Trails Master Plan.

It includes each city in Jackson County and how to connect them with trails. This plan comes on the heels of a study over the past decade that revealed residents are interested in the outdoors, so the county wants to make a change.

“If they can do it, it would be great because more people that get together, the safer the area. More people, better security I believe,” said Ocean Springs resident Beverly Agar.

“I’m actually near the new high school, so I’d like to see something over there in that area if there isn’t any already that I don’t know about," added Aimee Baudier.

For instance, the Gautier Bicycle Network Plan would provide east to west paved connectivity in several locations and unpaved trails at the Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge. The total trail would be 24 miles and would link the city with Ocean Springs, giving people more safe access to the entire county.

It’s not just biking. The plan also details walking trails and paddling.

Gautier Mayor Phil Torjusen said in addition to this master plan, the city is moving forward to create walking trails at George W. Martin City Park, originally reported in August. Six months later and the mayor said bids are coming in for the project.

Crews would install an 8-foot wide asphalt loop at the park. It will be three quarters of a mile long and include at least 10 fitness stations, with entrances from three different locations: the senior center, the splash pad at the park and off De La Point near the old historical school. The total cost is$190,000, paid for with tidelands funds and a trail grant.

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