It has been over 10 years in the making, but the completion of the Indiana-Michigan River Valley Trail is on schedule for this Fall! Niles Charter Township and the City of Niles, as well as St. Joseph County Parks (IN), have each tackled gaps in the trail pathway between downtown Niles, South Bend and Mishawaka in Indiana. Construction of the remaining gap in Niles Charter Township began in 2018, with the removal of trees in Brandywine Nature Preserve. It commenced in March of 2019 with the eventual installation of a pedestrian bridge, spanning Brandywine Creek. Final grading and paving of this portion of the trail is underway, and the installation of trail amenities will be completed by the end of October.
The IMRVT began over a decade ago, and represents the backbone of a trail system which has expanded greatly over the years. As communities grew to use and appreciate pedestrian trails, branches off the IMRVT were developed, such as the LaSalle Trail in South Bend and the Granger Paths system in Granger, IN. These trails and branches are now all being linked and have been rebranded as the Crossways Trail Network. The hope is that more of our citizens and the visitors to our area discover the Crossways Trail Network and explore our communities. We have a lot to offer and having safe, accessible trails is a great way to accomplish this.
Please join us in celebrating the completion of the IMRVT on November 9th, 2019. Niles, Niles Charter Township, Southwest Michigan Planning Commission, St Joseph County Parks and Wightman Engineering are hosting a Grand Opening of the trail, to introduce the new connection from Lakeland Hospital in Niles to the IMRVT, as well as the new connection at Fort St., and the crossing of the IN / MI state line. We will unveil the new logo for the IMRVT, as well as a “golden spike” to commemorate the connection of Indiana and Michigan via our shared pedestrian trail. Details at each specific location and times are forthcoming, but save the date!