Plans are in the design phases for the first phase of the South Coast Greenway Trail, which will eventually extend from Little Manatee River to Symmes Rd. in Riverview. The first phase is a 1.2 mile stretch in Ruskin.

Hillsborough County has good news for residents who enjoy the outdoors. Representatives recently hosted a public meeting showing design plans for the first phase of the South Coast Greenway Trail, a 10-mile project that will extend from Little Manatee River Preserve to Symmes Rd. in Riverview. The first phase, known as 1 A, is a 1.2 mile stretch in the Ruskin area that will extend from Shell Point Rd. to 19th Ave. near 30th St.

The trail will be 12 feet wide and will be paved to accommodate travel, exercise and recreational uses for cyclists and pedestrians between Hillsborough and Manatee counties.

“Hillsborough County’s Master Plan identifies the South Coast Greenway as a major nonmotorized paved trail facility in south Hillsborough County that will be part of the SUNTRAIL Connector and will increase trail connectivity between Hillsborough and Manatee counties,” said Hillsborough County Senior Media Relations Strategist Chris Wilkerson.

The trail will offer many options for residents looking to exercise or explore the area. “The proposed design includes a 492-foot long pedestrian bridge, wayfinding signs and pavement markings, landscaping, benches, bike racks, shade shelters and trash receptacles,” said Wilkerson.

In addition, the trail will provide connectivity to Hillsborough Community College’s (HCC) Southshore Campus along with three residential roads: Dovesong Trace Dr., Meadow Glade Dr. and Oak Pond St.

According to Wilkerson, the design stage of the project is nearing completion and construction is anticipated to begin in Spring 2020 and end in early 2021.

The projected cost for the project is $1,702,000, with $85,000 for design and $1,617,000 for construction.

To learn more about the project, please visit www.HCFLGov.net.