The outline of some new trails is emerging in the dry ground near the former Sunkissed Meadows Golf Course in Fort Dodge.
Crews are now working on long-anticipated walking and biking paths on the east side of the Des Moines River.
The project includes a loop around the former golf course plus extensions to the north and south. Those extensions will go to First Street at the northern end and the base of the Union Pacific Railroad high bridge at the southern end.
-Messenger photo by Hans Madsen
A red flag on a stake marks the center of a new trail being constructed along the east bank of the Des Moines River.
Construction started in late June and is expected to be done in October, according to Stephanie Houk Sheetz, the senior city planner.
Randy Kuhlman, the chairman of the local Trails Task Force, described the paths now under construction as a ''key part of our trail system.''
''By having a trail section along the riverfront it will bring people to the river and allow us to take advantage of that natural resource,'' he said.
The roughly two miles of trails were first envisioned in the city's 1999 riverfront plan. They're now being built as a result of a partnership between the city government and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Each entity contributed about $1 million for the project.
Kuhlman said that financing arrangement is a good example of the way money has been leveraged to pay for the trails. The city's overall trail project, which will total about 15 miles, is being financed with private donations and money from the local, state and federal governments.
Ardo Schmidt Construction Inc., of Preston, is the general contractor for the riverfront trails. That company was hired by the Army Corps of Engineers.
The completed trails will be 10 feet wide and will be paved with asphalt.