Ypsilanti Water Street Shortcut
While at the present time, the Border To Border Trail is officially routed on-road in the Depot Town and central portion of Ypsilanti, when Ypsilanti B2B Trail improvements are constructed next year (Frog Island and Grove Road) the new official route will have users traveling through Riverside Park and the Water Street area. With that said, at the present time, bicyclists can sample this future route right now with this map link as a guide - www.plotaroute.com/route/814870.
For eastbound cyclists, the key point is that when you are going south on Rice Street, when you approach Cross Street, turn right (west), cross the bridge over the Huron River, then make a left (south) turn into Riverside Park and take the pathway through the Park and across the new non-motorized bridge over the River at the south end of the Park.
For westbound cyclists, when on Grove Road, look for the curb cut where the Water Street trail intersects Grove Road. Then take the Water Street Trail around to Michigan Avenue, cross the Huron River on the new non-motorized bridge and travel through Riverside Park until you go up the hill and reach Cross Street. Turn right (east) on Cross Street until you reach the first northbound road (Rice Street) and make a left (north) turn to get back on the official B2B Trail route.
Some things to keep in mind when using the Ypsilanti Water Street shortcut…
GIVE WAY TO PEDESTRIANS IN THE PARK!!! – When on your bike and approaching pedestrians, give them plenty of room and warn them you are approaching. This warning can be a bell or calling out “Bicycle passing on your left (or right)”. Also, be aware that young children and dogs being walked should be given a wide berth as their movements can be unpredictable at times.
Be aware that Riverside Park can be closed for events. These include - May: Show and Shine Car Show, VW Car Show. June: Color Run. July: Camaro Car Show, Elvis Fest, Michigan Beer Festival. August: Heritage Festival. During these events groups basically rent the Park and charge admission, so unless you want to pay, you will need to use the “official” B2B on-street route (map at www.plotaroute.com/route/814934).
When crossing Michigan Avenue, use the crossing signal buttons, but be alert. When you press the crossing button, the stop signal for cars happens pretty fast. But in this day of distracted driving, be very careful as it is not uncommon for some motorists to run the stop signal.