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Wasson Way 6A—Bridging Communities and Creating Connectivity

Wednesday, December 13, 2023 by Caitlin Sparks

The chilly morning of December 13 marked a significant milestone for the Evanston and Avondale neighborhoods as leaders from the community, Tri-State Trails, CROWN, Wasson Way, and more came together to celebrate the ribbon-cutting ceremony of Wasson Way Phase 6A. As the clock struck at 9:00 am, the Blair Court trailhead was teeming with enthusiastic neighbors eager to witness the inauguration of this transformative trail project.

The scene was vibrant and promising, with the crisp winter air not deterring the community spirit that filled the space. Freshly constructed sidewalks led the way to the newly paved trail, a testament to the dedication and hard work of making this vision a reality.

The ceremony commenced harmoniously as students from South Avondale Elementary took center stage, their voices uniting in song. Sandra Jones Mitchell, Avondale Community Council President, shared her insights, emphasizing the trail’s significance beyond a mere infrastructure project. She spoke about the positive impact on community well-being and health, recognizing the Wasson Way 6A as more than just a trail but a conduit for betterment.

Sandra Jones Mitchell, Avondale Community Council President
Pastor Tait of the New Beginnings Church of the Living God in Avondale

Pastor Tait echoed these sentiments, emphasizing how this trail symbolized a path toward greater community cohesion and connectivity. It was a physical embodiment of the unity and togetherness these neighborhoods foster.

Sean McGrory, the President of Wasson Way and Vice President of the Tri-State Trails Board

Sean McGrory, the President of Wasson Way and Vice President of the Tri-State Trails Board, spoke with gratitude and appreciation. He extended heartfelt thanks to the City of Cincinnati, with a special acknowledgment to the Department of Transportation and Engineering (DOTE), Mayor Aftab Pureval, and the Cincinnati City Council.

McGrory turned his attention to the residents of Avondale and Evanston, recognizing their invaluable support and enthusiasm for integrating the trail into their neighborhoods. Their solidarity and encouragement were instrumental in ensuring that the Wasson Way 6A became a reality, fostering a sense of ownership and pride within these communities.

McGrory also took the opportunity to thank the Council for recently allocating $400K in the budget for lighting on Phase 6A, marking a pivotal moment as it will become the first section of Wasson Way to feature trail lighting. This allocation not only enhances safety but also symbolizes a commitment to inclusivity, ensuring that the trail remains accessible and inviting for all.

Mayor Aftab Pureval

Mayor Aftab Pureval, acknowledging the historical disparities resulting from highway developments that divided these communities, emphasized the importance of investing in areas that have long been marginalized. The Wasson Way 6A, he expressed, is a beacon of positive change, bridging divides and bringing much-needed resources and investment to these neighborhoods. Far from being a mere stretch of pavement, the trail represents a tangible commitment to rectifying past injustices and fostering inclusivity. It signifies a shift toward community empowerment, where residents can come together, share spaces, and thrive collectively.

Members of the Avondale Running Club were in attendance for the ribbon-cutting
Jennifer Foster was acknowledged at the ribbon cutting for her tireless advocacy for the trail in Avondale

The Wasson Way 6A is a testament to the power of community-driven initiatives and the resilience of neighborhoods striving for progress. As the ribbon was cut, it marked not just the opening of a trail but the opening of a new chapter—one filled with promise, connectivity, and a renewed sense of community.

This occasion will be remembered as a symbol of unity, resilience, and the unwavering spirit of Evanston and Avondale—a reminder that when communities come together, remarkable transformations can unfold.

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