Parks & Rec Dept.

200 South Hamilton
Gahanna, OH 43230

(614) 342-4250
(614) 342-4100 Fax

Hours of Operation
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM M-F

Big Walnut Trail - Section 5

Big Walnut Trail, Section 5, will connect McCorkle Park to Granville Street, via Ridenour Road. The trail will be 4,183 linear feet.


Construction is scheduled for Fall 2015.

Total: $650,000
Grant: Clean Ohio Trail Fund, $500,000. (up to 75% of the cost) Expires Dec. 31, 2015

Maps & Images

Please be patient. Plan files are large and may take a few extra minutes to load completely. Thank you.
Big Walnut Trail Section 5 Plans
Big Walnut Trail Section 5 Plans cont.
Revised Site Plan  (August 2015)
Original Site Plan  (June 2015)
(images show how the completed trail will look along the Olde Ridenour Rd)


Q: What was the process for determining the trail route along the golf course?
A: The Big Walnut Trail Master plan, developed in 2006 by a citizen trail committee, called for nine sections of trail to create the main artery from north to south through Gahanna.  Section 5 is one of those nine sections.  Originally the plan called for it to be on the edge of Olde Ridenour Road.   This required a shift in the roadway (requiring private easements) and a sizeable retention wall project.  Further design removed this alternative for two reasons. 

1.  The price of the relocation and retention wall were not cost effective. 
2.  The private property on the south end of the golf course which had previously been used by the public is undergoing ownership change and development, which took away the alignment from the street to Creekside Island. This property is not available for the City to purchase.  

We looked to the other side of the creek once again (from Cherry Bottom to Carpenter), which was evaluated in 2006.  There is not enough space there to add the trail, and the high bank on the east side of the creek is sure to fail at some point in the future. 

Another option that was considered was going along the east side of the golf course along the creek. Concerns of flood damage and the long-term sustainability of the trail due to flooding, ruled this alternative out. This option was also ruled out due to building a fence along the trail that would collect debris during flooding.

The current alternative provides the necessary connection for section 5 with minimal golf course impact, and only one crossing where golfers and trail users intersect.

Q:  Why did the P&R Department choose a trail alignment that removed so many trees?
A:  The original recommended alignment required much less tree removal than the current alignment.  However, through several public meetings and comments the alignment was modified to preserve the northern sledding hill and reduce the amount of protective fencing required, which resulted in more trees needing to be removed.

Q: What is being done to protect trail users from flying golf balls?
A: A protective chain-linked fence that will be designed to blend with the environment will protect trail users from flying golf balls.

Q: Will golf carts be allowed on the trail?
A: No, golf carts will not be allowed on the trail. There will be no shared trail use.

Q: Will the Big Walnut Trail intersect with the golf path at all?
A: Yes, there will be one intersection of the BWT and the golf path at the base of the hill near the clubhouse. Golfers will have the right-away.
Trail traffic will have a yield/stop.

Q: Will the trees being removed for the project be replaced?
A:  Yes.  Once the construction is complete, an intensive landscape and reforestation project will be implemented to replenish the tree lined street appearance and minimize visibility of the protective fence.

Q: Why build this section of the trail at all if so many compromises needed to be made?
A: The Big Walnut Trail is a citizen-led initiative. Connecting the trail has ranked highly on every citizen survey. Residents want the trail sections connected to provide access to parks and to have an environmentally-friendly connection from one side of town to another.

According to the 2006 Master Plan, Objective 1 under “Key Area 2 – Parks and Outdoor Recreation Facilities”, stated: Build connectivity between parks, schools, Olde Gahanna, Metro Parks and adjacent communities through the development of trails and greenways. (page E4) The community supported this initiative 81%.

Other survey data supporting trail development:
City-wide survey: 2008: 86% support for trail development
Parks & Recreation Master Plan survey 2015: 77% support for trail development

Additionally, the Big Walnut Trail is one part of the Central Ohio Greenways effort, a collaboration among greenway planners, parks departments and local trail groups to connect local trails across a 12-county area. Working with local, state, and national partners, the goal is to provide local residents and visitors with the following benefits:

• Conserve resources and improve the environment
• Support growth of the local economy
• Improve health and increase recreation choices
• Expand transportation options
• Increase community identity
• Encourage trail professionals to share how to build and keep the trails at their best

Additional Resources

Clean Ohio Trail Fund

Central Ohio Greenways - Big Walnut Trail (website is currently not available)