Grand Canyon Nat Park: Greenway Dedication _0334
On September 13, 2012, Park Superintendent Dave Uberuaga was joined by representatives of the U.S. Forest Service, Arizona Trail Association, community of Tusayan and several contractors and local businesses as he cuts the ribbon on the Tusayan Greenway and parking lot. NPS Photo by Kristen M. Caldon
Grand Canyon National Park recently celebrated the completion of three new park facilities intended to promote healthy outdoor activity in the park and to increase visitor access to the South Rim by means other than automobile.
The celebration began with a ribbon cutting ceremony at a new parking area located on Kaibab National Forest land just north of the gateway community of Tusayan, Arizona. The parking area’s 100 new spaces serve as parking for the new Tusayan Greenway; additional parking for the seasonal, park-and-ride Tusayan shuttle; and as a trailhead for the Arizona Trail which stretches more than 800 miles from Mexico to the Utah border and shares 6.2 miles of the Tusayan Greenway.
After the ribbon cutting, Park Superintendent Dave Uberuaga and several of the celebration’s participants rode their bikes 6.5 miles along the new Tusayan Greenway from the parking lot to the park’s new Bike Rental and Café located at the Grand Canyon Visitor Center plaza. The greenway provides safe, direct access from Tusayan to the park’s primary visitor center for those entering the park on foot, bicycle or horseback.
Following the ceremonial bike ride, event participants were treated to an open house at the Bike Rental and Café which opened in June. The open house was hosted by Bright Angle Bicycles, L.L.C., a small Arizona business that successfully competed for the park’s first contract to provide bicycle rentals and grab-and-go food service at the visitor center plaza.
According to Superintendent Uberuaga, the event and the three new facilities were all about connections -- connections between the National Park Service and the U.S. Forest Service, the park and the community of Tusayan, visitors and new ways of experiencing park resources, and parks and a healthier nation.