Draft Master Plan released

During the past month, we have been hard at work drafting the final Greenway Master Plan document for the Town of Zebulon. It’s been a long and thorough process, where our recent attention has turned from creating maps to writing, editing and organizing. We are proud to present a draft copy of the Master Plan to you, the community that has helped form the vision and shape the framework of the Greenway System.

Cover_shadowWe know there are still holes to fill and content to be edited. The draft report is in the hands of the Greenway Advisory Committee and the Public Works Department and while we await feedback from them, and from you, we’ll continue to keep working, making this report the best it can be. The draft report also was presented to the Town of Zebulon Commissioners on Wednesday, July 15. Our next big milestone is presenting the final draft of the report to the Commissioners on September 8.

… And if luck is in our favor, we hope to see at least one trail (if not two)get built within the next few years.

Below you will find links to PDFs of each section of the draft report. We look forward to hearing your feedback. As always, you can get in touch with us by commenting on this post or by sending an email to cray@townofzebulon.org.


Continued news coverage

The Eastern Wake News continues to cover the development of the Greenway Master Plan. Read the full article here: Maps bring Zebulon’s greenway master plan to life. We’re happy to have the coverage … and we hope you’re as excited about this project as we are!

Feel free to let us know what you think by responding to any of the posts here or by sending us an email. We look forward to hearing from you.

Updated Maps

Based on great feedback from the community open house in April and meetings with the Greenway Advisory Committee and Town staff, we’ve made adjustments to the corridor maps. While the general routes from point to point have not changed much, the corridors in which the routes associate with have changed.

For example … You made it abundantly clear that you want a recreational loop trail that gives you access to nature. We listened and reorganized a couple of the corridors so that Corridor #6 now starts at the Community Park, follows a sewer easement along the railroad corridor and Little Creek and loops back to the park via an electrical transmission line easement. This corridor provides access to different types of “nature,” from the open meadow to the wooded creek.

Corridor 6 probably saw the biggest change. Some corridors saw moderate change while others saw zero change. For example, Corridor #3 now includes bicycle and pedestrian improvements that we feel are essential to the success of the corridor, while Corridor #10 remained the same.

We also took a closer look at downtown and started to make some distinctions about bicycle and pedestrian improvements. Not every street needs bike lanes and 8′ sidewalks. Our downtown map organizes the streets into a hierarchy, with different improvements for each tier.

The updated maps are posted below. Please feel free to leave a comment on the web site or send us an email at cray@townofzebulon.org. We would love to hear your continued feedback.

Click on the links to see the full-size maps.
Downtown Map
Corridor 1
Corridor 2
Corridor 3
Corridor 4
Corridor 5
Corridor 6
Corridor 7
Corridor 8
Corridor 9
Corridor 10

Maps, maps and more maps

On Tuesday, April 7, the Greenway design team and the Town of Zebulon hosted a public open house to present and discuss the proposed Greenway System. The turnout was excellent and the enthusiasm displayed by the public was astounding. We learned a lot from talking with everyone and hopefully we gave you a better sense of how we arrived at the proposed system. We know it’s not perfect and there is still some work to be done. We’d like to hear from you about where we need to make improvements.

At the end of this Master Plan process, we will have picked out 2 or 3 projects that we think we will be successful, with the intent of getting them built within the next 3-5 years. But, we need your input to help prioritize. Which corridors do you like? Which ones don’t you like? Which routes would you use most often and why? Is there an aspect of a particular route that you love … or hate?

We look forward to hearing from you! Drop us line at cray@townofzebulon.org. Or leave a comment on the web site.

Greenway System Map

This map shows the Greenway system in its entirety. Sections along existing utility easements and other public land are colored green while sections along routes that require new easements or property acquisition are colored yellow.

Corridor Map_Initial Concept
Click the map to see a full-size version in a new tab or window

Corridor Key Map

Each corridor is color coded on the Greenway system map and relates to maps of individual corridors.

Base with aerial
Click the map to see a full-size version in a new tab or window

Individual Corridors

Maps of individual corridors at a smaller scale so you can see more detail.
Click the maps to see a full-size version in a new tab or window


Corridor 1


Corridor 2


Corridor 3


Corridor 4


Corridor 5


Corridor 6


Corridor 7


Corridor 8


Corridor 9


Corridor 10


Downtown Map

Greenway Maps on display – Tuesday, April 7

Please join the Greenway design team and Town of Zebulon staff for the next public open house on Tuesday, April 7, 2015, in the Town Hall lobby. Stop by anytime between 5pm and 7pm to discuss proposed Greenway corridors and connections. This will be a great opportunity to see and comment on maps of the proposed Greenways and to see what we have been up to since the last open house. Let us know what we did right and, more importantly, let us know where we can improve. We need your input … after all, this is your Greenway system.

Feel free to email us with any questions you might have at cray@townofzebulon.org or leave a comment at the bottom of the page. We hope to see you at the open house and look forward to hearing what you have to say.

Sewer Easement field trip

On arguably one of the coldest days of the year, we set out on an adventure in open-air utility vehicles traversing wet, remote areas of Zebulon. The Public Works department and members of the Advisory Committee led the design team on a tour of the town’s sewer easements.

As much fun as tooling around in the mud with four-wheel drive utility vehicles is, this was an opportunity for the designers to see parts of Zebulon that cannot be easily seen by car or on foot. Public sewer easements present good opportunities for greenway locations. Easements are already cleared, publicly owned, lead to important destinations and often contain some beautiful scenery.

Tayrn Meadows to Weaver’s Pond

We arrived at the Public Works office bright and early that morning, all bundled up in our wool hats, heavy gloves and thermal underwear. We met with the Public Works staff, loaded up the trucks with the utility vehicles and headed out to our first stop … the sewer easement that connects Taryn Meadows with Weaver’s Pond. This has the potential to be a strong connection between these two neighborhoods as well as Wakelon Elementary School and Park. (click on the photos to see them larger)

Future reservoir area

Next, we explored part an area on the west side of town near the location of the future reservoir. This area provides one of the few opportunities to cross US 264 and has the potential to be a strong connection between the Riley Hill Road area and Little River Park. However, the area nearest US 264 is extremely wet … so wet that we managed to get one of the utility vehicles stuck. Oops.

Zebulon Community Park to 5 County Stadium

After warming up and grabbing lunch at the Community Center, we headed out along the sewer easement that runs between the Community Park and the sewer treatment plant near 5 County Stadium. Like the other trips, this was a very wet area and most likely would require a fair amount of boardwalk. But the view is worth it! Along the trip, we spotted deer, hawks and a variety of other wildlife. This easement follows Little Creek, which surprised us with a beautiful rock outcropping and waterfall.

Wedgewood to Gannon Ave.

Our last stop for the day followed sewer easements that connect Wedgewood to Gannon Ave. These easements have the ability to connect multiple neighborhoods together and provide a bigger connection to downtown and possibly Little River Park. When we got stuck for a second time, it was time to call it a day.

Overall, the trip was a fantastic experience! We learned a lot about the town and its hidden treasures. We also reaffirmed some of our initial thoughts on potential greenway locations. Stay tuned for the next round of maps that will detail some of our top priorities for corridors.

Initial concept presented

On Thursday, February 12, obs landscape architects and AMT Engineering met with the Town’s Greenway Advisory Board to give an update on our progress and to present our initial concept plan. The plan was well received and the group was pleased with the progress thus far.

A week prior, the design team spent a full day exploring Zebulon and making field observations that will help define the final greenway corridors. We explored neighborhoods, sewer easements, parks and other potential destinations. Let me just say that we were impressed with Zebulon’s parks and the abundance of already existing connections that can easily be made.
Initial Concept.ai
Click image for full size map

We have posted a map of our initial thoughts for Greenway connections and destinations. Please take a look and let us know what you think. Are we on the right track? Or did we completely miss something? As we continue through this process, we will be zooming in and focusing on more precise trail and route alignments.

We also have posted the presentation that was given to the Advisory Council, which can be found by CLICKING HERE.

We are super excited about this project and look forward to hearing from you! After all, it will be your Greenway System.

In the News

Brian Starkey, principal of obs, and Lauren Dickson, left, talk with members of the community at the open house.

On January 13th, obs landscape architects and the Town of Zebulon hosted two public open houses in the Town Hall lobby. The Eastern Wake News wrote an article about the events.

Zebulon residents show strong support for greenway system

By Aaron Moody / Eastern Wake News

ZEBULON — While residents didn’t show up in droves at the first chance to offer input on Zebulon’s greenway master plan, consultants in charge of forming the plan said turnout was enough to give them an idea of what the people want.

The nearly unanimous feedback from the couple dozen visitors of two open house sessions at town hall on Jan. 13 was that the public supports connecting prominent locations in town with a system of trails.

The consultants collected about 50 surveys from attendees of the town hall sessions and others who filled them out online and at town facilities at other times. Only one survey showed opposition to a greenway system, citing concerns of potential crime on the trail as the reason.

“We also have the feedback of town staff, the town council and the advisory committee,” said Brian Starkey of OBS Landscape Architects. “We’re getting a lot of feedback from a lot of places. It was very positive in terms of the benefits.

“Those who filled out the survey really understood what the benefits of a greenway system are. People spoke to what destinations they’d like to see greenway connect, and expressed an interest to being connected to Wendell, Knightdale and the Raleigh greenway.”

To read the rest of the story:  Click Here

I-40 pedestrian bridge a boost for health, business

By Jim Wise / News & Observer
DURHAM — A survey of people walking, running and cycling on the American Tobacco Trail near Southpoint mall suggests that its Interstate 40 bridge has boosted local health and the economy.

Results from May and June 2013 and the same time a year later showed:

•  A 133 percent increase in use on the trail section studied;
•  A 163 percent increase in calories burned;
•  And a $3.7 million increase in spending related to trips on the trail.

That’s according to “Behavioral Effects of Completing a Critical Link in the American Tobacco Trail,” a study released last week by the Institute for Transportation Research and Education (ITRE) at N.C. State University.

Maps added

We’ve added our initial analysis maps from the public open houses to the site. We’ll use that space to add more maps, including future greenway alignments, as we develop them. Click HERE to see the maps, or click on the MAPS tab in the menu bar above.

Natural Features Map.ai