The Florida Department of Transportation, District 2, retained Ayres to design and prepare construction plans and special provisions for an 18-mile pedestrian/recreational trail from I-95 in St. Johns County to East Palatka in Putnam County. The multi-use trail has a 12-foot typical section with a 2-foot unpaved stabilized sodded shoulder within an existing 100-foot railroad right-of-way.
Services included designing the trail along an existing railroad bed, along with intermittent trailheads, recreational areas and associated drainage, signing and pavement marking, maintenance of traffic, and environmental mitigation plans and permit preparation. Three bridges were designed for crossings at Deep Creek (tidally influenced), Moccasin Creek, and Cracker Branch, including hydraulic modeling for preparation of associated bridge hydraulic reports. TIITF easements were required for each bridge.
All six segments of the trail have been completed, and a grand opening was held in 2019. The trail is part of the planned 260-mile St. Johns River-to-Sea Loop, which will eventually connect the East Coast Greenway and U.S. Bike Route System.