Fight over Jeffy Trail expansion continues

Fight over Jeffy Trail expansion...

MADISON, Wis. - Neighbors have been fighting the Jeffy Trail expansion for years and the plan was shot down last month by the common council, but the expansion could be back on the table. 

The city has long considered connecting Jeffy Trail, a dead end road, to Raymond Road to connect neighborhoods, spread out traffic and reduce emergency response times. It's a plan residents have opposed from the start and was removed from the city's Comprehensive Devleopment Plans. 

During Tuesday's finance committee hearing, Mayor Paul Soglin introduced the 2018 Executive Capital Budget, which included funding for the $618,000 Jeffy Trail Extension. 

"The problem is we've got a much larger area to worry about, not just that immediate neighborhood," Soglin said. "As mayor, I've got to look at the entire city and we just can't have a city where each individual neighborhood has certain streets blocked off." 

Neighbors say they're disappointed and feel it goes against the city's People Powered Planning promotion to make Madison a bicycle and pedestrian friendly city. 

"I hope that Mayor Soglin will go along with what has been voted on by many of the representatives in the common council, that it not go through, " Connie Fass, a Madison resident who lives near Jeffy Trail, said. 

Soglin said he thinks the council will probably take the Jeffy Trail extension funding out of the budget, but wants to remind council members this is space 250,000 people in Madison share. The final vote on the budget takes place the second week in November. 

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