Oakmont's Creekside Park could get trail extension, pump track
Oakmont officials hope to obtain a state grant to expand recreational offerings at Creekside Park.
Council voted unanimously on May 15 to apply for a $232,000 grant through the Commonwealth Financing Authority's Greenways, Trails and Recreation Program.
Project engineer David Ivanek of Bankson Engineers said the money would be used for a walking/biking trail extension and pump track at the park along Dark Hollow Road.
This would be the second phase a multi-phase plan. Last year, a 1,470-foot walking/biking trail that is about 8 feet wide and made from crushed limestone was installed in the park.
Phase 2 involves a 5,330-foot extension of that trail, and it would go from the park both east and west along Dark Hollow Road.
“We have a vision to eventually build a bridge and cross Plum Creek and head into Verona down to the bank of the Allegheny River,” Ivanek said.
Estimated cost of the trail extension is $186,000. Cost of the pump track is roughly $80,000, which brings the total projected cost to $266,000. The borough would pay the difference. “This is just one more creative installation by the Oakmont recreation board to improve the parks of Oakmont,” Borough Manager Lisa Cooper Jensen said. “Trails are very popular right now. The pump track sounds like something everyone will have fun on.”
A pump track is a continuous loop of dirt berms and mounds that bicyclists can ride on without pedaling. Its name comes from the pumping motion that riders' upper and lower bodies make as they ride around a track.
The track would have an asphalt surface constructed on a quarter-acre of Creekside Park near the sand volleyball court and soccer field.
Both projects would have to be put out for bids.
Ivanek said the grant application deadline is May 30, and the borough hopes to hear from the state in September or October. Construction could begin next spring and take a few months.
Council in March authorized the recreation board to apply for a state Department of Conservation and Natural Resources grant for the pump track and a volleyball court in Creekside Park, along with walking trail development and lighting in Riverside Park by Riverview High School and an Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant ramp on the south side of Riverside Park. If that application is approved, a grant could be awarded in October.