By Zachary Lang SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC NEWS) Erie Boulevard may soon be a part of the Empire State Trail, according to a map released by the Syracuse Metropolitan Traffic Council. The official layout of the trail through Syracuse has yet to be determined, but it has the potential to reconnect the city with the cycling community.
Lots of cyclists shop at Syracuse Bicycle, a local cycling shop located on Erie Boulevard, experiences . The street it calls home has become run-down and in need of repair and innovation.
“The Boulevard isn’t as popular or as busy as it once was,” said Paul Komanecky, an employee at Syracuse Bicycle. “I think that there’s enough space out there to absorb a bike-specific lane without a doubt.”
While many biking events occur in Central New York like this past weekend’s Cazenovia Hillbender Cycling Festival, the city itself sees very few due to busy streets and a lack of bicycle paths in certain areas.
“We have a few bike lanes here and there but nothing that really connects the different parts of the city and the surrounding areas,” said Komanecky. “So once, I think, they put that together, I think the bike culture and the bike community around here will grow exponentially.”
The Empire State Trail was recently approved by the New York State legislature. It will cost 200 million dollars and will run across the Erie Canal from Buffalo to Albany as well as from Canada to New York City.
A date has yet to be announced for the beginning of construction for the Empire State Trail. It is expected to be finished by 2020.