A project years in the making to establish a new park along the Capital Crescent Trail in Bethesda is rolling ahead at last.
Montgomery Parks, the Coalition for the Capital Crescent Trail and the Montgomery Parks Foundation are teaming up on the roughly $350,000 project to create River Road Park, said Mike Nardolilli, the foundation’s executive director.
Ron Tripp, the chair of the trail coalition, said nearby businesses have used the two-acre property near the trail’s River Road crossing as a place to park vehicles
“It’s a major entrance to the trail. A lot of people get on it at River Road and were going through a little wasteland,” Tripp said. “The idea is to create a little oasis.”
The future park will act as a rest area for cyclists on the 11-mile trail that connects Silver Spring and Georgetown, Nardolilli said.
“The benefit for the neighborhood is they get a little park there,” he said.
Tripp said the coalition members have had their eye on the property for about a decade, but initiating the parks project has been slow going.
The Coalition already has raised and spent about $150,000 to design the park, he said. However, officials aren’t planning on tackling all of the improvements at once.
The first step will involve landscaping the area and adding a curb that will discourage unwanted parking on the site, Tripp said. A parks press release said the plans also call for installing seating, signs and a pergola, or type of gazebo.
Nardolilli said the project partners will continue fundraising to add future amenities, such as bicycle racks. Already, since signs have gone up announcing the park project, a donor has stepped forward to pay for a bike repair station, he said.
Donations for the project can be made to the trail coalition or the parks foundation.
Bethany Rodgers can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.