The Quarry Trails metropolitan park is now open to the public

20th Central Ohio Metro Park debuts today, a combination of urban oasis and adventure nestled on the West Side in a former limestone quarry.

  • Quarry Trails Metro Park is not yet fully open, but many of its features, including a 25-foot waterfall, are now accessible to the public.

Why is this important: The 180-acre site achieves the goal of placing a park within five miles of the home of every Franklin County resident, Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks spokeswoman Peg Hanley told Axios.

The plot: The place is also home to the history of central Ohio. Limestone mined from the quarry by Italian immigrants who settled nearby was used to build the Ohio Statehouse and Ohio Stadium, among other area landmarks.

In numbers : The acquisition and development of the land represents an investment of over $ 17 million to date, $ 11 million funded by Metro Parks and $ 6 million in grants.

And after: Kayaking and paddle boarding will make their debut this spring once the weather warms up.

  • Other features to come: Dog park, picnic areas and toboggan run.
  • Metro Parks still assesses the safety of rappelling and climbing, Hanley said.

?? Alissa here. Quarry Trails surrounds my neighborhood, so when I heard opening day was approaching, I found it hard to contain my excitement.

  • I came by last week for a tour with the Metro Parks employees.

My opinion : When complete, Quarry Trails will offer a little something for everyone. I like the mesh of natural and urban elements.

  • A short paved path leads to a scenic viewpoint of the waterfall accessible to disabled people.
  • Descend a limestone staircase to splash yourself in the water.
  • Follow the trails that cross the lake to a boardwalk and try to spot turtles and beavers, or continue for what is now a three mile hike.
  • For the adventurous – and, unlike me, highly coordinated – there are five rugged mountain bike trails with ramps, steep drops, and obstacles.

If you are going to: 2158 Old Dublin Road, park and waterfall, 2600 Dublin Road, mountain bike area. Open from 6.30 am until dusk.

A map of the Quarry Trails metropolitan park as it opens today. Photo courtesy of Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks

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