This Non-Motorized Transportation and Trail Plan will guide the development of Homer’s successfully integrated non-motorized transportation and trail system over a twenty-year period, from 2004 to 2024. It has been written as a development manual to be consulted, referred-to, dog-eared, rained-on, coffee-stained, finger-print smeared, and otherwise continuously used as the principle document for creating an integrated non-motorized transportation network.
The purpose of this master plan is to establish a clear vision for the future of trails and trail development in the city of Homer. The emphasis of this plan is on areas within the city limits with some recommendations for linkages with existing or potential trails outside city limits. While the City of Homer does not have jurisdiction over lands outside city limits, the City recognizes the value of legally protected regional trails.
While the concept of a non-motorized transportation and trail system in Homer has long been considered, a plan for realizing such a system has not been formally adopted. Development in Homer has resulted in the loss of green space once used for recreation by local residents and the loss of access historically used to reach outlying recreational areas. Maintaining legal access requires establishing public access easements that will remain permanently in place regardless of changes to land ownership. In addition, new development often places a primary focus on motorized transportation. Wide, straight streets encourage faster driving speeds, and this makes the street a dangerous environment for those traveling by other means. There are no guidelines for new developments to provide infrastructure for alternative modes of on- and off-street transportation such as sidewalks, bikeways, trails and multi-use pathways. There are also no methods in place to ensure compliance. While the community recognizes the economic, environmental, social, and health benefits of creating such a system, the limited number of available routes in Homer leaves residents and visitors with few options for recreation and alternative modes of transportation.