Cincinnati’s largest park is getting mountain bike trails.
The Cincinnati Off-Road Alliance (CORA) has been granted permission by the Cincinnati Board of Park Commissioners to construct a four- to six-mile natural surface trail located in Mount Airy Forest.
The multi-use trail will accommodate mountain bikers, but will also be used by hikers, walkers and trail runners.
CORA will work with the Cincinnati Park Board to construct, maintain and operate the trail, which will be bounded by Interstate 74 and West Fork Road. The trails will come at no cost to the park, according to CORA, which has already secured a $10,000 grant from REI and $5,000 in private donations.
The trail itself will be volunteer-built, so the bulk of the funds will be used for physical assets such as gates at the trail heads, signage and kiosks. CORA also maintains a small ongoing annual budget for all of the trails it manages using funds from memberships, fundraisers, sponsorships and project grants.
“We will continue to fundraise as the project progresses and other needs are made clear,” CORA president Doug McClintock told me.
McLintock said the timeline for opening the trails is dependent on weather, but conservatively expects completion in spring or summer of 2019.
Mount Airy Forest is Cincinnati’s largest park at almost 1,500 acres. The trail path will cover an area that in the 1930s housed barracks for crew workers with the Civilian Conversation Corps, who were building the park.
CORA, a local chapter of the International Mountain Biking Association, is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that works to create and preservice mountain bike access in the Greater Cincinnati region. It maintains more than 60 miles of multi-use trails within an hour of downtown Cincinnati, including trails at Covington’s Devou Park and East Fork State Park in Clermont County.
By Hannah McCartney Data editor, Cincinnati Business Courier