Trinity Forest Trails

Location Dallas, Texas Year 2013 Client HOK Architects
An ever expanding system of paved trails provides shade, skyline views, and a natural oasis in the city. 

Enjoying the quiet solitude of the forest while just a few miles from downtown; that was the goal of the Trinity Forest Trails. This three-phase project is composed of more than 13 miles of multi-use concrete trail. Design features include scenic overlooks at the Trinity River crossings, multiple trailhead stations, rest stations with user amenities, and design of three new single-span pedestrian bridges crossing the Trinity River. While managed by Wade Peterson, Pacheco Koch provided the civil engineering, land surveying, and hydrology services. Hydraulic analysis allowed approval of the bridges within the floodway, as well as stormwater crossings for a host of smaller tributaries and solutions for erosion control. This project included extensive coordination with the USACE and the City of Dallas. Due to the project being installed within the limits of the Trinity Flood Plain, the trail was slightly elevated to avoid siltation settlement on the trail surface following a flood event, with a cement-reinforced base course to limit erosion beneath the slabs. The safety rails on the elevated viewing platforms were specifically designed as removable panel sections so that when a floating tree or log damaged the rail, only specific sections could be replaced, without need for cutting, welding, and color-matching repairs. The entire project lies within the Trinity River floodplain. Bridges, trail routing, and facility location were all challenging to determine areas with least impact following flood events.

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