This is an installment of Curious Edina, an Edina Community Foundation project that seeks to answer residents’ questions about their city. Questions for Curious Edina can be sent to ECF@edinacommunityfoundation.org.
The Nine Mile Creek Regional Trail runs from the Cedar Lake Regional Trail in Hopkins to the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge in Bloomington. Of that 15-mile distance, 6 miles are in Edina, running from the north side of Centennial Lakes Park to Bredesen Park and ending at Highway 169. Edina residents can use the trail to access the 165-mile-plus regional trail network, providing access to popular destinations such as Lake Minnetonka and the Chain of Lakes in Minneapolis.
Construction of the trail in Edina took place from 2014 to June 2018. It included overpasses at highways 62 and 100, a tunnel under 70th Street West, and eight separate boardwalks that traverse 1.7 miles of Nine Mile Creek and its marshes.
The total cost was $25 million, with half of that funded by the Metropolitan Council with federal dollars for bicycle and pedestrian transportation. Additional investments came from the Minnesota Parks & Trail Legacy Program and work incorporated with street projects in Edina.
The Nine-Mile Creek Regional Trail was used by about 465,000 bicyclists and pedestrians in 2019, and it became even more popular during the pandemic in 2020.
The Edina project has received awards from the Minnesota and National Parks and Recreation Associations, the National Association of County Park and Recreation Officials, and the American Public Works Association.
Thanks to Jonathan Vlaming, the associate superintendent for planning design and technology for the Three Rivers Park District, for this information.