Work will begin soon on a one-half mile expansion of the pedestrian/recreation trail on Menomonie’s east side to connect the Dunn County Judicial Center and Government Center along Highways 12/29.
“The City of Menomonie is excited to partner with Dunn County to enhance the community’s trail system with the intention of improving the residents’ and visitors’ quality of life,” said Eric Atkinson, Menomonie city administrator.
Kris Korpela, Dunn County manager, said the project will increase safety for whoever has to travel by foot or bicycle between the two major county facilities.
“The Judicial Center is an essential service point for the residents of Dunn County and Menomonie and is almost inaccessible without a motorized vehicle,” Korpela said. “This project will enhance safety in the area and will be an important addition to our local trail system.”
In November, the Menomonie City Council approved a cost-sharing agreement with the county to fund one-half of the estimated $250,000 project cost using ARPA funding. This project was approved by the Dunn County Board of Supervisors as a part of the capital improvement plan in 2022.
“The trail project will help close the loop for people who access the trail for walking, jogging and cycling,” Atkinson said. “Additionally, expanding the trail system in our community will aid in efforts to reduce our carbon footprint by creating an opportunity for ‘green’ travel.”
The design that will provide the most safety for those using the trail calls for the road to be set back 40 feet from Highways 12/29 or and then to follow Stokke Parkway to the north where it will connect to the existing trail system. It will connect to the trail system on the west in front of Prevea and Churchill Tire on Stout Road.
“In addition to law enforcement, the Judicial Center houses the courts and many of the associated offices,” Korpela said. “Residents in court, paying a speeding ticket, coordinating child support, getting married, attending family court, or serving on a jury all utilize the facility. This trail will provide a safe option for residents to access the essential services provided in this facility.”
The work, which is tentatively scheduled to start within the next month, will involve some landscaping to remove brush and trees that are in the path’s designated route. Officials said options are being considered as to what will be the best uses for the trees “to provide value to residents,” Korpela said.
“The city of Menomonie will work collaboratively with Dunn County to ensure we are using sustainable materials while minimizing the potential negative impact construction efforts could have on the local environment,” Atkinson added.