GOSHEN — The Winona Trail Bike and Pedestrian Underpass at Goshen College is ready for use. The college will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony at 4 p.m. today, Nov. 9, to celebrate the completion of the underpass. They will also hold tours of the underpass and both Goshen mayor Allan Kauffman and Goshen College president Jim Brenneman will speak.
The project has been a long time coming for GC campus project coordinator Glenn Gilbert. Gilbert, who has been with the college for 27 years, said that the project first began about 10 years ago, when they did a feasibility study.
“We’ve been talking about this for many years,” he said.
The project has been funded with help from a $1.8 million grant from the Michiana Area Council of Governments. The grant was given to be used for bike trail improvements. The college also paid for “architectural, engineering and planning costs,” according to the press release. Construction for the project began in April 2012 and was scheduled to wrap up in late October or early November of this year.
The underpass is already being used by students, though the wheelchair lift will undergo another inspection. After the state inspector comes next week, the lift will be ready for use. There will also be a “runnel,” a path to walk your bicycle down the underpass. Gilbert said he thinks the underpass will be popular with students and people in the community.
Gilbert said about 15-20 trains roll through campus every day, so this underpass will help control traffic through campus. They did a major part of the construction on July 4, when the trains were not running.
“It’s been a fun project to watch,” he said. “There’s been a lot of interest and enthusiasm as people have watched it all summer.”
For more information on the project go to www.goshen.edu/pr/underpass.