I live in S. Florida (Ft. Lauderdale) and have been riding all over for commuting, fun,
and exercise for 15 years. I used to enjoy on road biking as a way to clear my mind.
Over the years, me and my bike have encountered stupid drivers on exactly 3 occasions.
I lost all 3 battles. The first i ended up under the bumper inches from the tire, the second
was a drunk driver, compound leg fracture and 6 months of therapy, the third was a
criminal with a PERMANANTLY suspended license made me a hood ordiment while running
a red light (hit and run). (on the bright side, I was cussing the guy the whole time )
I no longer like riding on the road. The term "Shellshock" comes to mind. So now my
riding takes me to off road trails and a few rail trails. Problem is, there are no 20+ mile
paths in Broward county.
South Florida has a system of canals and dykes that criss cross the state from Miami, to
Ft. Lauderdale to Naples to Lake Okachobee to Tampa. Most canals are paralleled by a
earth **** about 15-25 feet high. Some people already ride these dykes (no jokes please )
from Ft. Lauderdale to Lake Okachobee for a distance of 55 miles. No cars, no drunk drivers,
no idiots with cell phones.
All of the land mentioned is owned by the state government.
So here's the question: how do I get this land designated as a park/path/right of way.
There's no land to buy, no buildings in the way. and it would be a GREAT path connecting Weston
(west of Ft. Lauderdale), Sunrise, Coral Springs, and mabie Palm Beach. A part of this path
is near a state park anyway.
I would really like to see a project like this work, but I simply don't know where to start.
Any help, suggestions would be appreciated. Would anyone want to start a community group
or a special interest group (is that what they are called?)
It's a legislative thing, either at the local or state level. Start with talking to the local and state legislators and greenways people. Politicians like to take credit for stuff that appears to be constituent-friendly that doesn't cost anything and for which they can tout at the next election as one of their accomplishments.
There may be some similar efforts already underway. Take a look at government resources, universities (departments of landscape architecture, ecology, city planning), and non-profit trails and land conservancy organizations. Here's a start. Good luck.
We have the "Highline Canal Trail" which wanders about 75 miles through at least 10 different jurisdictions, and is the service road for the now little used water in the canal. Gravel surface ("fines") for most of the way, some pavement, a bit of cement.
Highly used by walkers, joggers, bicyclers, etc., especially on weekends. This trail is about 30 feet wide for most of its distance.
Perhaps this might serve as an example? Do a google on Highline Canal Trail Colorado for more info.