Nine Mile Creek Regional Trail Project
Three Rivers Parks Regional Trail

Master Plan

When complete, the 15-mile Nine Mile Creek Regional Trail will span the cities of Hopkins, Minnetonka, Edina, Richfield, and Bloomington and connect to the Lake Minnetonka LRT, Minnesota River Bluffs LRT, Cedar Lake LRT, North Cedar Lake, and Intercity Regional Trails as well as the planned Minnesota River State Trail, Dakota County Big Rivers Regional Trail, Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge Bloomington Visitor Center, and Fort Snelling State Park.

The multi-year master planning process reflects input received through community assessment team meetings, individual agency and stakeholder meetings and correspondences, public open houses, and public comments received through various stages of the master planning process from fall 2008 through August 2013. This culminated in the Nine Mile Creek Regional Trail Master Plan (9MB).

While significant portions of the regional trail in Hopkins, Minnetonka, Richfield, and Bloomington are in place, there are missing segments or segments that do not meet regional trail standards within these communities; these will be updated as opportunities and funding allow.

The largest gap in the regional trail corridor is through Edina. In 2008-2010, the Park District partnered with the City of Edina on a route assessment process for the Edina segment. This process included the formation of a Community Assessment Team, with residents representing their neighborhood for a proposed segment of trail. Five open houses were held as part of the route assessment process. Ultimately, both the Three Rivers Park District Board of Commissioners and the Edina City Council voted in favor of the creek-based route. For more information, see minutes of the Edina City Council meeting when the Council chose the creek-based route, and the Three Rivers Board action for the approved route.

Implementation Plan for the Edina Segment

The Park District Board of Commissioners awarded a contract to SEH Inc. in January 2014 to assist with preliminary engineering of the Edina segment. Preliminary engineering was completed in June 2014 and the final trail alignment was approved by the Edina City Council on July 15, 2014, and by the Three Rivers Park District Board of Commissioners on Nov. 20, 2014. At that meeting, the Board of Commissioners also awarded a contract to SEH Inc. for final engineering of the Edina segment. Review interactive maps of the current trail alignment (10MB). The west segment includes the trail alignment from Highway 169 to Tracy Avenue. The east segment continues from Tracy Avenue to Xerxes Avenue at the Edina/Richfield border.

East segment

The Park District has secured federal funding for the east segment from Tracy Avenue to Xerxes Avenue. The Three Rivers Park District Board of Commissioners awarded a contract for construction of the East Segment at its Regular Board meeting on Sept. 24, 2015. The contract was awarded to Eureka Construction of Lakeville, MN. The overall project schedule will be refined over the coming weeks, but the first phase of construction will be the boardwalk segment between Valley Lane and 70th Street along Nine Mile Creek. Tree clearing for that segment is expected to occur in late October/early November. Boardwalk construction will continue through the winter months, with completion of the segment expected by April 2016. The remaining paved trail segments and the pedestrian bridge over Highway 100 will be constructed during the 2016 construction season. The goal is to have the east segment fully complete by spring 2017. Review this map of the east segment construction schedule. 

West segment

Three Rivers Park District also applied for federal funding for the west segment in December 2014. The project is included on the list of projects selected for funding by the Metropolitan Council Transportation Advisory Board. These projects are expected to be approved by the Metropolitan Council and incorporated into the 2016-2019 Transportation Improvement Plan later this year. Assuming this approval occurs, the goal is to begin construction on the west segment in fall 2016 and have the entire Edina segment completed by summer 2018. Review this map of the west segment construction schedule.

Construction updates

August 3, 2016

The boardwalk between Valley Lane and 70th Street is nearly complete, with only a portion of the railing remaining to be finished. Within the next two weeks, the contractor will be constructing the paved trail connection to the boardwalk in Heights Park, requiring closure of the access trail from Creek Drive. The contractor will also be completing the boardwalk near 72nd Street and Ohms Lane within the next month.

Beginning on approximately Aug. 29, the contractor will be closing a portion of 70th Street to construct a pedestrian tunnel under 70th Street just west of the railroad tracks. This closure is expected to last until early November. The posted detour will route drivers around the closure using Cahill Road, 74th Street, and Metro Boulevard. Advanced notice signage will be posted approximately one week before the closure begins.

The original project plans included constructing the regional trail from the Edina Promenade to 75th Street along the west side of Xerxes Avenue in fall 2016. However, the City of Edina has identified a need to upgrade sanitary sewer pipes running underneath Xerxes Avenue as well. The City will complete the sanitary sewer upgrades in 2017 and construct the trail once the work is complete.

June 13, 2016

The contractor will be closing Highway 100 overnight next week to install the beams for the new pedestrian bridge over the highway. Southbound Highway 100 will be closed overnight on Monday, June 20 and northbound Highway 100 will be closed overnight on June 21. Both closures will last from 10:00 PM to 5:00 AM the following day.

June 3, 2016
The following construction activities are expected to occur over the next two weeks:

  • The contractor will be setting beams on the west side of Highway 100 for the new pedestrian bridge over the highway. Setting these beams will require closure of Metro Boulevard on June 7 and 8 between the hours of 7:00 AM and 3:00 PM. A detour route will be posted on site.
  • Construction of the bridge abutment and piers along the east side of Highway 100 will continue.
  • The contractor tentatively plans to set the bridge beams over the highway during nighttime hours on June 18.
  • The contractor will begin building a retaining wall and fence along the entrance ramp from 77th Street to northbound Highway 100.
  • Excavation for retaining walls along the south side of 70th Street will begin during the week of June 6.
  • Work will continue on the boardwalk between Valley Lane and 70th Street.

April 13, 2016
The following construction activities are expected to occur over the next two weeks:

  • The contractor will continue installing decking and railing on the boardwalk between Valley Lane and Heights Park.
  • Construction of the bridge abutment and piers along the west side of Highway 100 at Metro Boulevard will continue.
  • The contractor will begin work on the paved trail segment along Ohms Lane and 72nd Street.
  • Work will also begin on the retaining walls along the south side of 70th Street.

March 25, 2016
Boardwalk construction is progressing on the segment south of Heights Park. The contractor will continue working on this segment as the weather and site conditions allow. Any boardwalks that cannot be completed during this construction season will be finished during winter 2016/2017 once the ground is sufficiently frozen.

Construction is underway for the pedestrian bridge over Highway 100. The contractor is driving piles for the bridge abutment and piers on the west side of Metro Boulevard. Bridge construction will require temporary closure of the ramp from 70th Street to southbound Highway 100 to allow construction of a bridge pier in the center median. At this point, the ramp is expected to be closed beginning in mid-May and last approximately one month.

February 26, 2016
The contractor has completed tree clearing for the boardwalk segment between Valley Lane and Heights Park. All installation of helical piles for the boardwalk corridor is expected to be complete by March 4. Construction of the timbers for the boardwalk has been temporarily suspended due to the unseasonably warm weather. We will continually re-evaluate the corridor and potentially build the boardwalk over the summer as ground conditions allow.

Construction of the pedestrian bridge over Highway 100 is expected to begin in mid-March. Bridge construction will require temporary closure of the ramp from 70th Street to southbound Highway 100 to allow construction of a bridge pier in the center median. At this point, the ramp is expected to be closed beginning in mid-May and last approximately one month.

February 10, 2016
Tree clearing for the boardwalk corridor is complete from Heights Park to 70th Street. The contractor is working south-to-north from 70th Street installing helical piles to support the boardwalk and is halfway complete. Helical pile installation is expected to be complete by Feb. 29. The contractor will finish tree clearing for the boardwalk corridor between Valley Lane and Heights Park beginning on Feb. 11 and they plan to be complete by Feb. 18. Boardwalk construction is expected to begin the week of Feb. 15 and will continue as long as the ground remains sufficiently frozen.

January 15, 2016
The contractor has completed the surcharge embankment construction on the Fred Richards segment and installation of helical piles for the boardwalk segment on the 7101/7117 Ohms Lane property. Tree clearing was also completed for boardwalk construction for about 1100 feet north of 70th Street. During the week of Jan. 18, the contractor will be installing helical piles along that cleared segment. Additional tree clearing along the boardwalk corridor near Heights Park is also expected to occur next week.

December 28, 2015
The contractor has made good progress on the installation of the helical piles for the segment of boardwalk on the 7101/7117 Ohms Lane property and expects to finish this week. Work has also continued on the surcharge embankment on the Fred Richards segment. Under the current schedule, the contractor expects to begin tree clearing for the boardwalk segment between Valley Lane and 70th Street during the week of Jan.11.

December 4, 2015
Unusually warm and rainy weather has delayed the beginning of tree clearing and boardwalk work on the segment between Valley Lane and 70th Street. The contractor will wait until the ground is sufficiently frozen before beginning this work. The surcharge embankment work on Fred Richards will also be delayed until the ground freezes. During the week of Dec. 7, the contractor will be clearing trees and beginning helical pile installation for the segment of boardwalk on the 7101/7117 Ohms Lane property. Helical pile installation for a pedestrian bridge on Fred Richards will also occur.

November 13, 2015
Tree clearing was completed this week for the Fred Richards segment, the segment along Lake Edina, and the west side of Metro Boulevard south of 72nd Street. During the week of Nov. 16, the contractor will continue with tree clearing for the boardwalk corridor between Valley Lane and 70th Street (weather dependent). The contractor may also begin construction of the surcharge embankment on Fred Richards. 

November 6, 2015
The contractor has begun staking the trail center line for the boardwalk segment between Valley Lane and 70th Street. Materials and equipment also are being moved so that work can begin on the trail segment through the former Fred Richards Golf Course.

Nine Mile Creek Watershed District approval

The Nine Mile Creek Watershed District approved the Park District’s permit application at its May 20, 2015 meeting. This permit will cover construction of both the east and west trail segments.

Trail alignment near Fred Richards Golf Course

The creek-based corridor that was approved by the Park District Board of Commissioners and the Edina City Council in 2010 showed the trail passing along the south side of the Fred Richards Golf Course, running parallel to the entrance road to the course, and connecting with Parklawn Avenue. The Park District began preliminary engineering in January 2014 under the assumption that this would continue to be the location of the trail. In March 2014, the Edina City Council voted to close Fred Richards Golf Course and in April 2014 authorized a consultant to begin a study for reuse and visioning for the golf course.

The City’s visioning process for a new park design at Fred Richards recognized coordination and connectivity with the Nine Mile Creek Regional Trail as a key consideration. Through a cooperative effort, the Park District and City have revised the regional trail alignment through Fred Richards in a way that complements the visioning plan and provides a better experience for trail users. The revised trail alignment was incorporated into the final visioning plan that was approved by the Edina City Council on Oct. 21, 2014. The interactive maps at the end of the Implementation Plan section of this page have been updated to reflect the revised alignment. See more details on the City’s Fred Richards Repurpose Process.

Meetings

Park District staff and SEH Inc. representatives have provided the following project updates:

How Do Trails Influence Property Values?

There are many studies on the relationship of property value and proximity of trails. While different studies result in different findings, the national trend indicates a positive relationship between trails and property values. The Analysis of the Impacts of Bike and Recreation Trails on Suburban Property Values study prepared for Hennepin County Community Works by Robert Luckow supports these findings. The study concludes that as distance from the trail increases, the sale price of a home decreases. For the trail corridors and properties included in the study, property selling price decreases $2.99 for every additional foot of walking distance between the trail and subject property. This equates to a 5.8 percent increase in selling price for an average home adjacent to the trail compared to an average home located 4,300 feet from the trail. This study includes four regional trail corridors in Hennepin County and accounts for more than 10 variables that may influence property selling price.

Stay Informed

Visit the overview page or sign up to receive email updates and alerts for this trail. For more information, contact 763.559.6779 or email ninemilecreek@threeriversparks.org.