Biking the Lake Trail around the perimeter of Palm Beach island, you’ll cruise past stunning mansions; Henry Flagler’s winter home, Whitehall; and cultural amenities. And it’s about to get even better.
In conjunction with the construction of the new Flagler Bridge, the Town of Palm Beach is moving forward with a project to connect the Lake Trail underneath the new Flagler Bridge. Doing so will provide a dramatically better bike facility as an uninterrupted path under the bridge will allow bicyclists and walkers to enjoy this amenity and avoid the dangerous crossing at Royal Poinciana Way. Very exciting. According to an FDOT spokesperson, The Town of Palm Beach is coordinating with FDOT in order to make this connection happen: [story from Palm Beach Daily News]
“The current bridge design includes space under the bridge for the future Lake Trail sidewalk but it will not be constructed under this contract,” replacement bridge project spokeswoman Tish Burgher wrote in an email. The DOT will leave space for 8-foot wide sidewalks.
Making Palm Beach island more bike and walk friendly would make Henry Flagler smile. After all, the island was car-free in its early years and “wheelchairs” (essentially bike taxis) were a common form of transportation around the island. This enhanced Lake Trail connection is keeping in line with the spirit of Flagler and early Palm Beach. Bravo! And kudos to Palm Beach Walks, an advocacy organization for biking and walking on Palm Beach island. Make sure to like their Facebook page for updates.
[Postscript: Many are asking about the West Palm Beach side of the bridge. That’s coming in the next few weeks, so be sure to subscribe to the blog (homepage –> put your email in the box) ]