The long-planned Old Vineyard Trail has reached a major milestone, with the nearly mile-long middle segment now open for public use on the northeastern side of Pleasanton.
The first phase of the trail extends from Vineyard Terrace to Heinz Ranch Court/Mingoia Street, with crews converting the portion of Old Vineyard Avenue into a public trail with paved asphalt on one side for pedestrians and cyclists and a compact aggregate material similar to gravel on the other side suitable for equestrian use.
Some 20 city officials were onhand for the ceremonial ribbon-cutting at the trail's intersection with Vineyard Terrace last Friday.
"It's a fantastic trail. It will be a great addition to the city and this neighborhood," Mayor Jerry Thorne said after the ceremony. "I'm very glad it's finished, the first phase."
It was nearly one year ago that the City Council approved of moving forward with the middle segment of the trail, confirming that the roughly 1.5-mile project would be divided into three phases.
The overall project would see the trail extend from the Shadow Cliffs Regional Recreation Area back entrance at the west to the Machado Place-Vineyard Avenue intersection at the east. City officials hope the final two phases will be completed within several years when funding is available.
The final cost of Phase 1 is estimated at close to $475,000 according to city engineering director Steve Kirkpatrick. Funding came from the Vineyard Avenue Corridor Specific Plan fee collected from housing developers within the plan boundaries.
The concept of closing Old Vineyard Avenue to vehicular traffic and converting it to a public trail dates to the 1999 specific plan, which outlined how the area would be developed with homes and other infrastructure.
The trail was to be established after the new Vineyard Avenue alignment was opened, which occurred in 2004. But Old Vineyard has remained open to traffic since, largely because of construction-related vehicle access.