Summer sees record numbers on trails

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) More people walked, ran or biked the city’s trails this summer than ever before, the city said Monday.

More than 188,000 walkers, joggers and cyclists used the trails in July, August and September, a third quarter increase of nearly 34,000 trail users over past years. The figure marked a 22 percent third quarter growth over the previous high mark of 154,828 set in 2012, the city said.

“There’s not a typical trail user anymore. Residents of all ages, shapes and sizes – throughout our community — are embracing our trails. It’s thrilling to see not only many new users this year, but many occasional users increasing the time they spend on the trails,” said Dawn Ritchie, Director of Greenways and Trails for the City of Fort Wayne. “Good weather always increases usage – but I think the tremendous growth we’re seeing this year shows that residents are embracing our trails and more and more residents want to be part of the trail network that connects people to destinations and to each other.”

The growth followed the all-time record high month set earlier this year in June when 73,226 residents were on our trails. The previous high mark for June was 55,432, set in 2012.

Figures for September show an increase of more than ten thousand users with 65,744 users this year compared to a previous high of 55,037 set in September of 2012.

The numbers are figured using infrared counters in 14 locations on city’s 70 miles of trails. The Fort Wayne Regional Trail Network adds another 20 miles outside of the City.