- About the Green Circle
- Plan a Visit
- Green Circle Events
- Contact Us
The concept of a trail extending along Town Run and Abrams Creek in Winchester has been discussed for at least two decades. The 1991 update of the City’s Comprehensive Plan included the statement: “Streambelts such as Town Run and Abrams Creek provide opportunities for bike paths or combined bike path/jogging trails. The open-air channelized part of Town Run could fairly easily be adapted to allow for bike path use by incorporating ramped access points at certain locations.” (p. VII-13)
The 1999 update of the City’s Comprehensive Plan noted: “The bike path under construction along Abram’s Creek in the Meadow Branch subdivision offers recreational value and could serve as an alternate east-west route if continued in both directions.” (p IV-6)
In late 2001, the idea of forming a loop by connecting the westerly termini of the Abrams Creek trail and the Town Run trail was presented to Common Council as the Green Circle project. In 2002 the City received a $200,000 Transportation Enhancement grant from the Virginia Department of Transportation.
In 2003 The Opequon Watershed, Inc. and the Old Town Neighbors Association were awarded an Urban & Community Forestry grant from the Virginia Department of Forestry for the Town Run Linear Park. The funding was used to create a public/private partnership with the City and hire a coordinator to solicit community input and additional grant funds to design and construct the project.
On February 28, 2004, approximately 40 people attended a community workshop led by the Green Circle Advisory Committee and the Department of Parks & Recreation. Outcomes included the formation of various subcommittees to deal with issues such as planning and design, fundraising, and community outreach. A March 1, 2004 article appearing in The Winchester Star newspaper helped to build community support for the trail project which was also being promoted as a tool for economic development and improved quality of life. Over the next 18 months Shawnee Springs Preserve was formally created and bridges for access and interpretive signage were installed. An annual fund raising event, the Green Circle 5-K and 1 Mile Kid’s Fun Run was established, and over $1.1 million in additional grant funds were procured, primarily from the Virginia Department of Transportation. A Bike & Pedestrian Mobility Study was also initiated by the Winchester-Frederick Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) and completed in 2005.