From safety improvements to doubling trail mileage, Raleigh’s Capital Area Greenway has a new vision for the future

RALEIGH NC (WNCN) – The Capital Region Greenway currently has 117 miles of trails. But the city of Raleigh plans to more than double that number and make dozens of improvements along the way.

Safety has become a major concern, especially after several flight declarations and the murder of a cyclist in 2020.

Tonya Lamm says she won’t go out in the dark and is worried about her daughter on the trails.

“Safety is definitely what matters most to me,” Lamm said. “I have a 15 year old daughter who loves to run and walk and it was another, I told her she needed a friend when she hits the trail.”

Although Raleigh Police have set up a six-person unit to patrol the trails, Raleigh’s new 400-page greenway plan includes adding more lights along the trails and darkened underpasses , the increase in volunteer and paid staff as well as the regular reporting of Greenway crimes to the DPR.

“Especially here, with the treeline, it’s very dark,” said Mary Michalak, who takes daily walks in Shelley Lake Park. “I have a friend who was walking alone and then she got scared because she was here, it was dark.”

The City also plans to add more than 160 miles of new trail networks with the goal of connecting trails to bike paths, public transit and major new developments. In total ranging from Wake Forest to RDU to Garner.

Other planned improvements include the addition of additional benches along long stretches of Greenway for people to rest, as well as road maintenance to help areas that frequently flood.

People can view the entire Capital Region Greenways Master Plan, including cost estimates for upcoming projects, online here.