There are usually hidden treasures in different neighborhoods, and in Ensley it’s Village Creek Trail (Ensley Greenway). The completed Ensley Greenway is the start of a larger trail system that’s 2.5 miles long between Avenue F to Avenue W. The greenway is almost complete, but is open for visitors.
In 2010 the Village Creek Human and Environmental Justice Society proposed a plan to build Village Creek Park that will consist of multiple trails between Ensley and Eastlake, stretching 26 miles. Phase one of the twelve phase project is the completion of the Ensley Greenway. Some of the other connecting trails will be the historic Civil Rights Trail and the Rotary Club Trail. Along the trail will include viewing stations and signage to educate visitors about Village Creek. The previous contractors for the Village Creek Park were behind schedule, now, ALDOT (Alabama Department of Transportation) took on the project in conjunction with the City of Birmingham to get it completed sooner.
Yohance Owens, the Executive Director of Village Creek Society pronounced,“There is now a sense of urgency because the community is tired of waiting. This is something they’ve been waiting on since 2010. There has been plenty of planning and community engagement…we’re talking about 8 years, that’s long enough.”
According to The Champions for Village Creek Greenway, the Village Creek Greenway will provide ample recreational opportunities to area residents, and the construction will also help improve the creek’s water quality.
What you can do today
Currently, you can follow the trail and its continued construction by the light fixtures that are on a path. Once the electrical work is completed by ALDOT, that will be the signify the completion of the Ensley Greenway.
Owens mentioned,“The second phase will be to possibly build an amphitheater, basketball courts, outdoor classroom near Jackson-Olin High School.” The second phase is scheduled to begin construction in 2019.
Fall Clean Up for Village Creek will be on September 15th from 8 AM – 12 PM starting at Avenue M.