The Loosahatchie River and its tributaries traverses 64 miles through five west Tennessee counties, including Fayette and Shelby in West Tennessee, flowing through the towns of Oakland, Gallaway, and Arlington, as well as the cities of Lakeland, Bartlett, and Memphis on its way to the Mississippi River. The River’s open space connects these communities, forming a green corridor that offers the opportunity to introduce alternative transportation in the form of a planned greenway trail system.
In support of this concept, and through a separate process, the Town of Arlington’s 2010 Land Development Plan identified the river and its floodway as areas to be preserved as open space for active and passive recreation. The River has also been identified as a greenway corridor on the Mid-South Regional Greenprint and Sustainability Plan’s Concept Plan, and so is part of a greater planning effort to connect communities along the River, from Fayette County to the Mississippi River, via alternative transportation routes.
Enabling a large population to enjoy walking or biking on a greenway trail has a positive impact on their health, and contributes positively to the region’s quality of life. The Loosahatchie River Greenway Trail Master Plan identifies the connections needed to foster such a greenway trail. The Greenway Trail will connect to the low- to moderate-income neighborhoods in Arlington, providing the residents with access to employment centers, green spaces, and affordable housing. The Greenway Trail will also connect to Arlington’s historic Depot Square at the Town’s center. This area is currently undergoing a period of transition, with some redevelopment occurring, and with greater opportunities available for redevelopment of the old commercial area.
Two concept plans were developed, both of which create a looped system that builds upon the existing bikeway and pedestrian circulation systems established on Milton Wilson Drive, and provides significant linkages along the Loosahatchie River Channel. Concept Plan B was selected in the process and is shown in the map below.