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Signs point the way along new Willmar bike routes

The first two routes of the newly designed Willmar bike routes are up. All totaled, the city plans to install signage for 10 bike routes across the city.

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The first signs for the new Willmar Bike routes have been installed on the northwest of town. Willmar Public Works installed the signs, paid for by the Statewide Health Improvement Partnership, for the Brown Turkey and Norway Pine routes. Chris Radel of the Willmar Bikes groups helped design the new routes. There will eventually be 10 routes total. Pictured are Ben from Willmar Public Works, Radel, Brittany Schmalz of SHIP and Paul Tinklenberg of Willmar Public Works.
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WILLMAR — While winter weather might not be the best for a leisurely bike ride, for those adventurous enough to venture out, there are two new bike routes ready for them to explore in Willmar.

They are the first of 10 routes that make up the city's new pedestrian and bike route system approved by Willmar City Council in September. The system was designed by Chris Radel, of the Willmar Bikes advocacy group, with help from both the Willmar and Kandiyohi County Public Works departments.

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The Green Norway Pine Route. Contributed / Willmar Bikes

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The Brown Turkey Route. Contributed / Willmar Bikes

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The Green Norway Pine and Brown Turkey routes located on the northwest side of Willmar are now signed, pointing the way for riders and walkers. The green route goes from the intersection of Kandiyohi County Road 5 and 15th Avenue Northwest to Robbins Island Regional Park, while the Brown Turkey route starts in the same place but ends at Swansson Field Recreation Complex.

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Ten new bike and pedestrian routes, which will be signed for easy travel, were approved by the Willmar City Council on Sept. 20. The routes will use existing trail infrastructure. The routes were created by the Willmar Bikes group, with help from Willmar Public Works and Kandiyohi County Public Works. Contributed / Willmar Bikes

The signs for the first two routes were funded through the Statewide Health Improvement Partnership. The City Council did commit to paying any costs that SHIP and other grant opportunities don't cover so that the remaining eight routes can get signed as soon possible. The total cost for the new routes, which use already existing bike lanes and paths in town, is $10,500.

Shelby Lindrud is a reporter with the West Central Tribune of Willmar. Her focus areas are arts and entertainment, agriculture, features writing and the Kandiyohi County Board.

She can be reached via email slindrud@wctrib.com or direct 320-214-4373.


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