Byrd Park fitness trail

in need of improvements

Editor, Times-Dispatch:

Between revitalizing neighborhoods and building coliseums, could Mayor Levar Stoney please squirrel away a couple of grand out of the budget to repair the one-mile walking/jogging VITA fitness trail in Byrd Park?

Many city residents — and county interlopers — use the trail every daily, but it is in such poor condition that I fear it might be washed across the Nickel Bridge and wind up on Riverside Drive.

I have seen the Grand Canyon, and the Byrd Park fitness trail has deeper gouges, grooves and gutters. When your foot hits one of those troughs, it feels like the ground has fallen out from under you — which it has. I suspect orthopedic doctors are double-parked on Police Memorial Way to scout out potential knee and hip replacement patients.

The fitness trail needs to be plowed up, and a fine gravel mixture rolled into it. Even better, how about covering the whole trail with indoor/outdoor turf, like City Stadium (I know that'll never happen).

Also, the geese in Byrd Park have terrible hygiene, and poor manners. Signs written in "goose talk" should be posted along the trail border reminding them that the trail is not their bathroom. Leaping over deep troughs in the trail is bad enough, but having to dodge geese deposits is even worse.

Still, it's a good fitness facility, and a worthwhile experience, especially with all the trees and shade in the summer heat. And I appreciate the new water fountain installed in September. It is a welcome and healthy addition to the Byrd Park fitness trail.

I'm proud of the city for having it. I just wish it were better. More benches wouldn't hurt, either.

Ernest Irby.


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