The Albany/Clinton County community has focused much attention on enhancing the built environment for healthy and active families over the last few years. They have benefitted from enhancements and resources provided through a cooperative agreement that the University of Kentucky received with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (CDC). The agreement focuses on improving health outcomes in counties with obesity rates higher than 40 percent of the population. The initiative has provided health enhancements such as a fit trail, disc golf, new water cooling stations for our schools, etc. Additionally, Mark Fenton, a national expert in active communities, has visited the community to lead walk audits and assist in the development of a bike/pedestrian plan. It is through these public conversations that citizens have identified the need for extended walking and biking trails. Currently there is only one half-mile circular track at the local park that serves the needs of both walkers and runners. There is no dedicated bike path, but occasionally bicyclists use the track at the park as well.
Stakeholders have outlined an area where an extended trail would be beneficial and would further connect citizens to the park, schools, library, wellness center, etc. Walk audits focused on the downtown Albany area and highlighted issues with sidewalks, accessibility, design, lack of spaces for people to sit, landscaping, etc.
The community is also fortunate to receive additional funds from the Kentucky Department of Agriculture to create a second downtown farmers market location. The Clinton County Community Foundation has purchased the land for the new market site, however there has not been an opportunity to create a plan for the design of the market or the surrounding area. The site dimensions are 80’x100′.
The Community Design Assistance Center at Virginia Tech worked with a Stakeholders Committee and the community to develop a conceptual trail linkage plan that links as many key sites near Mt. View Park. A comprehensive wayfinding (signage) plan for the town was prepared. Additionally, a conceptual design for a farmer’s market structure for the downtown was also developed.
Project team: Elizabeth Gilboy, Nick Proctor, Kevin Jones, Alex Jones and Nik Henry