ACTION ALERT: I-490 Trail Connection

490 bridge - Render_V3.01

Once the longest span in the country, the Clark Pershing bridge (also known as the Clark Avenue bridge) was removed from service in 1980 and replaces with a larger structure nearby that serves as I-490 today. The original bridge was built as a key link across the valley, and the I-490 bridge serves the same purpose today but for the exclusive use of motor-vehicles. An upcoming ODOT major rehabilitation project of the bridge presents an outstanding way to connect both existing and upcoming portions of Cleveland’s bicycle network across this span with a separated bike/ped path. Learn more, then take action below.

People biking and walking in our region are presented with very few safe crossings of the Cuyahoga Valley. To move from east to west (or vice-versa), your choices are very far apart, and require over 3 miles of added distance, often on roads with heavy traffic.

Riders have a choice of the Harvard-Denison Bridge to the south, or the Lorain-Carnegie (Hope Memorial) Bridge to the north to navigate across the Cuyahoga River and Industrial Valley.

Bike Cleveland proposes that during this major rehabilitation project of I-490, ODOT should use the opportunity to make a robust, separated trail connection between Broadway Avenue and W7th Street. This is a straight-line connection across the valley that would connect multiple neighborhoods together, and provide riders with an efficient and safe passage to their next destination. The project scope already includes reconstruction of the interchange ramps at W7th Street and Broadway Ave, so this is a major opportunity that should not be missed. It would serve to link the to the Towpath Trail and future Downtown Connector Trail in Slavic Village.

Projects like this are happening on interstates and highways across the country. A few examples include: Interstate 580, Interstate 66, Interstate 5, and the Woodrow Wilson Bridge.

TAKE ACTION: ODOT is seeking public comment on the rehabilitation of the I-490 Bridge. Learn more about the project here.  You can provide public comment here. Some sample language you can edit and use is included below.

If the comment period closes, you can also leave comments in support at

Sample language: The rehabilitation of I-490 presents an opportunity to ODOT to include a 2-way parallel bicycle and pedestrian path on the north side of the bridge. This path would create an efficient crossing of the Industrial Valley, which currently requires people biking and walking to go 3 miles out of their way to use the Lorain-Carnegie or Harvard Denison Bridges. A bike/ped facility on the I-490 bridge would provide a safe connection between the Towpath Trail and the future Slavic Village Downtown Connector Trail. There are examples of similar bicycle and pedestrian facilities on highways and interstates across the US. This connection is an opportunity to improve mobility in our region, and helps to realize ODOT’s vision of making walking and biking in Ohio a safe, convenient and accessible transportation option for everyone.