New additions to Huntsville's master plan for growth were announced on Wednesday.
Right now, there are 73 miles of greenways in the city, but with the new changes, there will be more than 300 miles.
Officials told WAAY 31, in order to make the rest of the Greenway Master Plan a reality, they're counting on the public's input.
“I’ve always loved nature. I mean, buildings are great, but I think nature should be preserved," said Huntsville resident, Natasha Smith.
Smith has lived in Huntsville for years and says this is an exciting time for the city, and she's looking forward to the new additions.
“I would definitely love to bike in the downtown area," Smith said.
But it’s not just biking additions the city can expect to see.
“A system of connected trails and greenways that will serve as recreation and transportation corridors throughout the city," said Huntsville mayor, Tommy Battle
City officials say those new additions are the result of feedback from people who live in Huntsville, and what they say they want to see in the plan.
The greenways will be a safe way for people to enjoy nature, and is a part of the city’s plan to promote growth and tourism.
Officials say the greenways will also help protect important historic sites like the Historic Huntsville Depot, the Roundhouse, and Veteran’s Memorial Park.
The greenways will also connect neighborhoods to schools and amenities.
But, overall, Long-Range City Planner Dennis Madsen says there are three main goals behind the greenways.
“One is improving connectivity, another is spurring economic development, and another is improving public health," Madsen said.
While Smith says she would definitely use the trails for exercise, she tells us the most appealing part for her would be the connectivity to nature.
“Brings happiness to people’s lives, just being out in nature, it kind of just calms them and gives them a sense of serenity," Smith said.
Officials tell WAAY 31 the Greenway Master Plan is a long-term project, saying they expect about ten years to complete it; but they say about 44 miles are targeted for construction within the next one to five years.
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