Phase 2 Bruce Vento Regional Trail Design Project Frequently Asked Questions

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Project Planning

What are the phases for the Bruce Vento Regional Trail extension?

The extension of the Bruce Vento Regional Trail (BVT) is split into two phases. Completing both phases will close the remaining gap between Buerkle Road and County Road J.

  • Phase 1 BVT extension is located between Buerkle Road to the intersection of Hoffman Road/Highway 96.  Phase 1 BVT extension was conducted as a separate planning process and began in 2014.
  • In 2018, the county initiated additional projects to evaluate options for the Phase 2 extension. Phase 2 BVT extension is located between Whitaker Street and County Road J and is currently being designed.

What was involved in the Phase 2 Feasibility Study?

Ramsey County Parks & Recreation previously completed an exhaustive evaluation of potential routes through White Bear Lake and White Bear Township from 2017 to 2019. Partners included in this work are Ramsey County Public Works, White Bear Lake and White Bear Township.

Several routes were analyzed on the east and west sides of Highway 61 to:

  • Assess existing trail infrastructure.
  • Re-evaluate the original route.
  • Evaluate railway adjacent areas and downtown routes including Long Avenue.
  • Examine usability and efficiency for both bikers and walkers.
  • Determine impacts to property and infrastructure.
  • Evaluate connections to downtown.

After the evaluation and engagement with public agencies and private landowners, it was determined many of these corridors, including downtown White Bear Lake and the Long Avenue route, were not viable options.  During the evaluation and public engagement process, Route 1 (Lincoln, Bald Eagle Ave/Blvd/Taylor/Hugo Road) was identified as the preferred route for connection to Hugo Road for the following reasons:

  • Route 1 scored the highest in the survey at community meetings and from other public engagement.
  • Provided the most appealing trail alignment and atmosphere for a regional trail.
  • Less turns and impact on local streets in White Bear Lake.
  • Good connections to the high school.
  • High quality viewing of Bald Eagle Lake.
  • Potential partnerships/coordination for railway crossing improvements.
  • City’s desire to incorporate local trail connections from Bald Eagle Ave to downtown area.
  • Could provide long-term trail loops between Bruce Vento and Lakes Link Regional Trail. 

What is the Phase 2 Bruce Vento Regional Trail Design Project timeline?

Initial design activities for the Phase 2 Design Project are anticipated to be completed in early 2022. The project is in very early stages of design, and we only have funding to complete this initial design phase. Outcomes from this project will inform future design activities for preliminary and final design.

What public outreach has been done?

There have been many opportunities for the public to weigh-in regarding route selections and trail design. Feedback was received from residents, public agencies and private landowners through meetings, email, online survey responses, and feedback through public agency meetings. An additional round of engagement is anticipated in January and February 2022.

When will this project be constructed?

At this time, it is estimated improvements may not be constructed for 8-10 years. Significant design activities remain in addition to seeking additional funding for design and construction.

Project Design

Will this project impact my property?

We are being very sensitive as it relates to property impacts. It is early in the design process, but we are currently investigating potential impacts. Additional design will be required to determine the extent of infrastructure, but proposed improvements will be in public road right-of-way. Final plans will need to account for stormwater runoff per City/Township/Watershed permitting requirements.

Are trees being removed for this project?

Ramsey County is sensitive to tree impacts that may result as part of this project. Based on an initial review, it is anticipated that there will be minimal tree impacts along Bald Eagle Boulevard and Taylor Avenue. We are currently investigating design options and potential infrastructure along Hugo Road. It is too early to tell exactly what impacts may exist on the east side of Hugo Road.

Will the trail block access to the Lake?

No, access to properties along Bald Eagle Lake will remain as it is today.

Will on-street parking be provided?

On-street parking is not planned to be provided on Bald Eagle Boulevard from Bald Eagle Avenue to Hugo Road. To add a trail along Bald Eagle Boulevard, between Bald Eagle Avenue to Park, existing on-street parking will be removed to allow a trail and two-way traffic. Currently, there is no on-street parking provided on Bald Eagle Boulevard between Park Avenue and Hugo Road and this will remain the same to avoid impacts to adjacent properties. For Hugo Road, we are investigating if parking opportunities can be provided along the roadway where space and right of way allows.

Can a trail be located on the east side of the railway or Highway 61?

No, there is not a viable option for this implementation.

Is there a connection between the Hugo Road pavement improvement project and the Phase 2 Bruce Vento Regional Trail Project?

The Phase 2 BVT project is planning for future implementation of a regional trail at least 8-10 years out. Due to the current pavement conditions on Hugo Road and timing for future trail improvements, Ramsey County Public Works initiated a pavement project in 2022 to improve pavement conditions on Hugo Road. The anticipated life cycle of pavement improvements is approximately 10 years.