In 2011, I was working part-time at a friend’s bicycle shop. We were excited to hear that they would soon begin building a bike trail across Florida and that it would go through Titusville. Having lived in Titusville and North Brevard for over twenty years, I had ridden most of the back roads in the area. At one time I lived in Mims, only a few homes from the proposed route. It was exciting news.
Time marched on. We saw no signs of a bike trail. My friend Richard, the bike shop owner, attended the planning meetings. He would always come back disappointed seeing how slow the gears moved getting the trail in place.
Then one morning in December 2013 I was driving through North Brevard along US 1 and I saw construction equipment atop the bike trail route, a former rail line. I stopped at a few points along it with my camera, snapping pictures to show anyone who interested. This was big, and great news.
Slowly, the progress continued north. Then suddenly, the pavement ended and the construction equipment vanished.
A year ago, when our friends were doing the first Florida Rail to Trail tour in the heat of summer, we learned that this piece of trail in Titusville was part of the East Coast Greenway and would also be part of the Coast to Coast Connector. Since there was no trailhead, Sandy and I parked near the south end of the pavement at the Art League of Titusville a year ago today. And off we went along the trail north toward Mims, Scottsmoor, and the ghost town of Maytown.
Well, that was the idea. The trail parallels US 1, past the backs of a couple of neighborhoods, a small industrial complex, and across the street from the Parrish Hospital. It continues north of the college, and goes past a large Baptist church and its parking lot. Crossing Dairy Rd, it then abruptly ends after 1.5 miles behind a small convenience store.
From the end of the paved trail, you can see the old railroad grade disappear under the dirt parking lot in front of the lumber company. Had the pavement gone only a tiny bit farther, it would have come to Singleton Rd, making it easy to cross at the traffic light to enter the bike path network at Chain of Lakes Park on the east side of US 1.
But it doesn’t. And since our ride last summer, we haven’t seen a speck of activity to extend the trail to Mims. Yet. As you drive along US 1, you can easily see the railroad bed. There are paralleling back roads that will allow me to eventually explore the gap north into Mims.
A 3-mile round-trip from the Titusville Art League at Draa Rd up just past Dairy Rd and back, paralleling US 1.