New River Trailhead at Fletcher Heights

The New River Trailhead at Fletcher Heights in Peoria, AZ, provides a new park-n-bike facility adjacent to Deer Valley Road and creates an access connection to the 13.5-mile New River Multi-Use Path. The trailhead incorporates cooperative funding, a unique spoke and wheel design, and innovative use of materials to overcome challenges related to connectivity, accessibility, topography, drainage, and utilities. The project incorporates amenities to promote the health, welfare, and sustainability of the community, including exercise and stretching areas, benches and bike stands, a large shaded ramada, lighting, landscaping, a chilled drinking fountain, trash and recycling containers, and a pet watering station.

Wilson & Company partnered with Waibel & Associates to design the new trailhead. The project was completed through a combination of federal and local funding sources. The City of Peoria successfully secured funding from the Maricopa Association of Government’s Pedestrian and Bicycle Design Assistance program, which provided funds for project scoping and concept design. Following the concept phase, the City of Peoria moved forward with the final design and construction through its Capital Improvement Program. The new trailhead, completed in 2017, was designed to accommodate vehicles, cyclists, and pedestrians. The design team and contractor worked closely with the City of Peoria throughout the development of the project – from concept design options to the final constructed elements.

This project closed a gap in the regional system by providing a connection to the multi-use path from the south side of Deer Valley Road, thus eliminating the need for a mid-block arterial crossing, providing access to the 10.5 miles of continuous paved pathway along New River, also known as the New River Path. Therefore, the project will provide direct access to the regional multi-use path network, including Skunk Creek Path, extending to Glendale, Phoenix, and other valley cities. Wilson & Company provided both the design and survey services on this project.

The bicycle-themed parking area, designed to resemble a cog and spoked wheel, provides easy circulation for its users. The project used several common materials but in creative and aesthetic ways, including:

  • Existing hardscape techniques were used to emphasize the spoke and wheel bicycle theme, with the scored concrete and a variety of colors.
  • The pattern for the board-formed concrete in the retaining wall was oriented vertically to visually balance the horizontal line of the walkway and lead your eye upward.
  • The ramada was also constructed with common materials, but the arrangement of the materials fulfilled several functions. In addition to providing much-needed shade, the ramada itself was constructed with an angular roof, oriented with the high end toward the river to maximize airflow and effectively cool the space.