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Ask The Times: Are there more bike trails planned in Hall County?
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Josh Rhodes and Angie Standridge walk along the paved trail at Laurel Park in Gainesville, on Saturday, March 10, 2018. - photo by David Barnes

If you’ve been wondering about something in your community, Ask The Times is your place to get answers. The following question was submitted by a reader and answered through the efforts of our news staff. 

Any plans for bike trails? Bike-friendly lanes? Anything? Specifically in North Hall. (There is a short trail in Oakwood, and the walking trail in the city which is even shorter. We need something multi-use in the north end of the county. My husband gave up cycling on the roads because it was too dangerous. And he prefers muti-use where he is in a natural setting.) 

North Hall has trails at two county parks, with plans for more at a future park at Healan’s Head’s Mill in Lula.

Laurel Park, 3100 Old Cleveland Highway in Gainesville, has a paved trail that is nine-tenths of a mile long, according to Hall’s parks and leisure director Mike Little. Little said the county is looking at adding more off-road, natural surface trails there, although there is no timeline for that project yet.

North Hall Park, 4175 Nopone Road in Gainesville, has a mile-long trail that loops around the field. Another multi-use trail at North Hall Park goes through the woods and is slightly more than two miles long. Little said bikers often use that trail.

When Murrayville Park reopens, likely within the next year, it will have trails, but those will likely be more for walking than biking, Little said.

The county also plans to turn Healan’s Head’s Mill, off Whitehead Road in Lula, into a 100-acre park. When that park opens within the next few years, it will have an extensive multi-use trail system, Little said. He said the hills in that area would make trails more difficult to bike on, although less challenging trails would likely also be included.

“We would look, as we do with our trail design, at adding different loops that are not as technical and are more beginner loops,” Little said.

Sam Baker, transportation planning manager for the Gainesville-Hall Metropolitan Planning Organization, said that anytime there is a new road constructed, the area is studied and bicycle lanes are considered.

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