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Beautification Project, Bike Path, And Pedestrian Walkway Announced

Historic Hempstead Plains to Be Open To Public for First Time

Nassau County Executive Thomas R. Suozzi has announced plans to create a pedestrian walkway and bike path that will extend from New York State’s existing bike path along Hempstead Turnpike to Eisenhower Park, adding approximately 10 total miles. This project will beautify the corner of Old Country Road and Merrick Avenue and open up the historic Hempstead Plains to the public for the first time. The $5 million cost of the plan will be funded in part by the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act (ARRA) project, with county capital money funding the remaining cost.

“For years, this beautiful park has been hidden behind a chain-link fence, and these improvements will mean that everyone can enjoy the country-like setting of the Hempstead Plains,” said Suozzi. “Nassau County is committed to enhancing our pedestrian and bicycle network, because it encourages healthy behavior. There’s nothing better than taking a bike ride or going for a walk on a sunny day, and now we will have a scenic and safe place to do that. We will continue to find ways to incorporate bike and pedestrian facilities in more projects.”

The improvements will ultimately result in a connection between the HUB, Museum Row, Eisenhower Park, Cedar Creek Park, and Jones Beach State Park. The project will include connecting existing multi-use paths along Hempstead Turnpike with Nassau Community and Museum Row, where paths will be reconstructed along Charles Lindbergh, Earl Ovington, and James Doolittle Boulevards. Additionally, the paths will be widened to accommodate two-way bike and pedestrian traffic, and vegetation will be cleared and a new one-half mile fence will be constructed in the Hempstead Plains. The total cost of the project is funded with County capital through the federal stimulus program.

The project is expected to be completed in three phases in 2010, with Phase 1 beginning this month.