Study Backing Trail Connector Approved

The Ventura Parks and Recreation Commission has approved a study that recommends connecting two bicycle paths to make the longest bike trail in Ventura County.

The proposed Ventura River Trail, which would be built by the city, goes north from the Pacific Ocean to Foster Park, east of the Ventura River. The 5.5-mile connecting trail would link the 3.5-mile Omer Rains Trail along the Ventura coastline with the 9.5-mile Ojai Valley Trail.

Bicyclists, equestrians and pedestrians would be able to travel from the Pacific Ocean into the Ojai mountains without worrying about automobile traffic.

According to the study, approved unanimously Wednesday, buying the land and developing the trail would cost $5.3 million to $9.3 million. Most of the money would come from state and federal grants, said Douglas Nelson, a landscape architect and author of the report.

City officials said it would be at least five years before the trail is built.

The city's planning division is reviewing what level of environmental study is necessary for the project.

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