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July 24, 2016

3,000-mile bike path to connect Philly to nearly entire East Coast

Route in Pennsylvania still mostly under development

Development Cycling
050115_Geno's_02_Carroll Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

A cyclist rides between Pat's King of Steaks and Geno's Steaks in South Philadelphia.

A continuous bike path that's been under construction for more than two decades will eventually allow Philadelphia cyclists to pedal everywhere from Massachusetts to Florida.

Work on the East Coast Greenway started in 1991. The project aims to connect the country's Atlantic Seaboard entirely with protected bike paths, according to a recent City Lab article.

Don't get too excited just yet, however. The article noted that the project is only about 31 percent complete, with 850 miles of paths designated by the Greenway thus far and about 200 planned for completion by 2020.

And there's still plenty of work to do in the parts connecting the Philly area.

According to the Greenway's website, the route through Pennsylvania currently relies primarily on road, something that won't change until more trails are built.

The Greenway has submitted a request for proposal to Philadelphia for its main thoroughfare trail in the city to run on Spring Garden Street, connecting the Delaware and Schuylkill rivers.

The project also has a number of trails in the city that are currently in the design and planning stages, including paths along both rivers and one along Cobbs Creek.

Right now, 61 percent of the route in Pennsylvania is still in development, according to the Greenway.

Dennis Markatos-Soriano, executive director of the project, told City Lab that completing the entire route will require plenty of cooperation from local communities, as the project's ambitious scope brings plenty of obstacles.

To find out more about the Greenway's progress in Pennsylvania and Philly, click here.