The newly revealed Red Rock Ridge and Valley Trail System includes Bessemer in the best ways. That means they included my suggestion for a trail using the old trestle and the overpasses along 14th Street. (I've been promoting that since 2009). But it also includes several other trails, which I will detail here. Click on the map for a larger image.
Here is closer detail of the trail.
Here is the link where you can see the entire map and explore the system. These trails were developed with input from the public, including a stop in Bessemer.
The lower "S" in the picture is sort of on top of the Trestle. See how the trail curves and heads down Alabama Avenue toward the Hall of History. Not included on their trail, but this could easily link Alex Bradford Park, Boateng's Cajun Restaurant, and the Hall of History to the system.
But notice how it curves southeast and runs along 14th Street (Highway 150). It's called the Old Bessemer Railroad Greenway Trail. This will require use of the overpasses that you must travel beneath to enter our neighborhood. This will connect with a major trail called the Bessemer CSX Trail, and also with the Shades Creek Greenway South and the Lakeshore Parkway Trail.
Notice the red trail headed northeast near Roosevelt Park? That rail runs along Dartmouth Avenue and is called the Dartmouth Avenue Trail. It connects to the Harmony Drive Greenway in Lipscomb, which connects to the US Highway 11 trail (Bessemer Super Highway) and the Valley Creek Greenway.
There are other trails in Bessemer, including the Halls Creek Greenway and the DeBardeleben Park Connector, and the Alabama Adventure Connector.
Click on the link and use the map tools to zoom in to see the details of these trails.
Now for the reality. The trail system could take 30 years and $200 million to build.
But I know a lot of people in Bessemer and Lipscomb that would like to see these trails developed. And I know we can be creative in seeking funding to get started! In fact, some of this was discussed at the Bessemer Historical Homeowners Association meeting last night.