Update on the Mississippi Greenway: Cliff Cave County Park

Project Overview:

Construction on the extension of the Mississippi Greenway in Cliff Cave County Park is underway!

Following meetings with the St. Louis County Executive’s office and Councilman Ernie Trakas, Great Rivers Greenway and St. Louis County Parks is proceeding with the  project!

Tree removal along the greenway path is complete. Following guidelines provided by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services, all tree removal was conducted while the bats that roost in these trees – including the endangered Indiana Bat – were still hibernating in nearby Cliff Cave (You can learn more about the bats here: www.greatriversgreenway.org/bats). In addition to trees along the greenway path, contractors also removed  invasive plants—including harmful Bush Honeysuckle—that are choking out native plants and other trees within the park. When the project is complete there will be more than a thousand native trees, shrubs, sedges and flowers planted along the trail to restore and boost the native ecology of the greenway.

It is yet to be determined whether the trail will connect with Telegraph Road upon its completion. A safety assessment of the planned crossing at Telegraph Road will be conducted this summer. If that study determines by August 1 that the connection is indeed safe, we will move forward with our existing plans for the planned connection. Otherwise, a turnaround will be added to the trail about 1,500 feet east of Telegraph, and the path that was cleared for construction access will be replanted.

Thanks to everyone who has voiced their support, concerns and perspectives regarding this project. We are grateful for your patience and input and we will continue to provide updates throughout construction. As always, contact us anytime with questions.

» Click here to view information on the Mississippi Greenway master plan


Current Status:

Removal of necessary trees  is complete.

Primary construction on the new trail is underway.

A traffic study to determine the safety of the Telegraph crossing will be conducted summer 2017. Depending on the outcome, either the neighborhood connection at Telegraph and Erb will be constructed as planned, or the access to Telegraph will be removed.


Project to Date:

Community open houses were held in January and October 2016 with our partners at St. Louis County Parks to share project details and gather input from area residents.

Plans were modified several times based on community feedback.

A bid for construction was awarded December 15th, and funding was approved by the Great Rivers Greenway Board of Directors in January 2017.


Project Map:


New Mississippi River Overlook:

cliff-cave-overlook-2

cliff-cave-overlook


Protecting Endangered Bats:

Cliff Cave County Park is home to several species of bats, including the endangered Indiana Bat – which spends the summer months roosting in trees. To protect these bats, we need to remove any necessary trees prior to March 31st while these bats are still hibernating within the cave. When they come out of the cave, the bats will choose to roost in other trees and will not be disturbed by construction.