Village Creek

Village Creek Corridor

The Original Olmsted Vision

Due to the severe flooding that was known to exist along Village Creek at the time, the 1924 Olmsted Master Plan for Birmingham designated the floodplain of Village Creek as an ideal site for a linear park, which could provide a venue for public recreation while serving as a buffer for flood waters. Unfortunately the floodplain of Village Creek was subsequently developed for residential and industrial use, which exposed life and property to the streams frequent floods. However, in recent years the City of Birmingham has purchased flood prone residential properties along the creek under federal grants, and removed residents and homes from harm's way. Through this effort, the green space originally envisioned by the Olmsteds is now reappearing, and it sets the stage for future greenways, trails, and meaningful connectivity that can enhance the neighborhoods that the creek flows through and support the economic revitalization of the area. The Freshwater Land Trust has initiated the establishment of the Champions for the Village Creek Greenway, which brings city leaders, business owners, and neighborhood residents together to identify ways of improving the quality of life of citizens that live in the Village Creek Corridor through the establishment of parks and greenways and development of economic opportunities.

The Auburn Urban Studio has developed numerous site plans for the Village Creek Greenway from East Lake in the east to Bayview Lake in the west. These detailed plans are incorporated into the Red Rock Ridge & Valley Trail System Master Plan and illustrate the next step in the process of the implementation of greenways through design development for any part of the system.

Proposed greenways and street-based trails will not only take advantage of the new greenspace along Village Creek, but will also connect to important Civil Rights sites in the Enon Ridge and Collegeville areas.

Downstream from Bayview Lake, Village Creek cuts a 120 foot deep canyon through Plateau Region of Jefferson County, creating a breathtaking natural area that can only be enjoyed by canoe. This master plan proposes canoe launches in this area that can afford access to the "Village Creek Blueway."

Jurisdictions

City of Birmingham and Jefferson County

Overall Corridor Distance

38.6 Miles

Featured Trails

Village Creek Blueway - This blueway has canoe launches at Shady Grove Road and Minor Road.


Village Creek BS Rail Greenway - This proposed rail-to-trail greenway along BS railroad begins at Minor Road just south of Adamsville Industrial park at the Freshwater Land Trust property and travels east until just west of the JCES Water Treatment Plant where the Auburn Urban Studio plan for Village Creek proposed a birding tower and linkage to Ensley Pratt Park, Sanford Howze Park, Hudson Research Center and historic coke ovens.


Avenue W Trail - This proposed street-based trail begins at the intersection of North Highland Drive and Dugan Avenue and travels south along Dugan Avenue / Avenue W, intersecting with the Thomas Neighborhood Greenway, then travels to Village Creek and the Wade Greenway. A road-diet is recommended with sidewalks on each side.


Thomas Neighborhood Greenway and Wade Nature Preserve - This proposed shared-use greenway begins at the intersection of Avenue W and Republic Boulevard and travels in the right-of-way of Republic Boulevard to Village Creek. The trail turns north and travels through Wade Sand and Gravel property to 1st Street in Thomas, then turns south and parallels New York Avenue back to Village Creek. The greenway begins to follow Village Creek to the east, crossing underneath Arkadelphia Road and railroad bridges connecting to Duke Park and East Thomas Park. See pictures below for Auburn Studio Plan illustrating another option of crossing the creek over Arkadelphia Road Bridge.


Dorothy Spears Greenway at Village Creek - This proposed shared-use greenway connecting along the old Enon Ridge Railbed to 3rd Street West.


West Enon Ridge Greenway at Village Creek - This proposed shared-use greenway trail starts at 1st Street North and follows the creek to the Enon Ridge Trail.


North Village Creek Greenway - The shared-use greenway trail follows Village Creek from 5th Street North to 27th Street North, traveling under the bridge at I-65. See pictures below for plans in this area prepared by the Auburn University Urban Studio which feature a skate park under the viaduct and ball fields adjacent.


Village Creek Greenway at Norwood - This proposed shared-use greenway in the Norwood neighborhood follows along Village Creek in the proposed park along the Creek, as seen in Figure 6.10.


Airport Trail at Village Creek - This proposed street-based trail from Norwood Greenway following Vanderbilt South, then turning onto Richard Arrington Boulevard , which turns into 3rd Avenue North. The trail turns north onto 65th Street, connecting with Village Creek Greenway at East Lake. See pictures below for a trail section at Interstate-59/20.


Village Creek Greenway at East Lake - This proposed shared-use greenway travels along Village Creek from the southwest corner of East Lake Park until 65th Street North, where the corridor becomes street based.


East Lake Boulevard Trail - This proposed street-based trail begins at the intersection of Richard Arrington Jr. Boulevard and Coosa Street, and travels northwest along Coosa Street turning east on to East Lake Boulevard. The trail follows East Lake Boulevard to 6th Avenue North, where it connects with the Airport Greenway. See pictures below for a similar underpass treatment proposed by the Auburn Urban Studio.


Other Trails

Trail Name Trail Type Length
Village Creek Blueway L 6.0 mi
Village Creek Blueway L 8.0 mi
Village Creek Blueway L 8.0 mi
Village Creek BS Rail Greenway C 2.0 mi
JCES Greenway at Village Creek A 1.2 mi
Ensley Pratt Greenway at Village Creek A 0.6 mi
Wade Greenway at Village Creek A 1.5 mi
Arkadelphia Trail at Village Creek I 0.5 mi
Dorothy Spears Greenway at Village Creek A 1.3 mi
1st Street West Trail at Village Creek I 0.2 mi
West Enon Ridge Greenway at Village Creek A 0.3 mi
Enon Ridge Trail I 0.4 mi
East Enon Ridge Greenway at Village Creek A 0.2 mi
North Village Creek Greenway A 1.2 mi
30th Street Trail F 0.6 mi
Norwood Greenway
Airport Trail at Village Creek F 4.3 mi
Village Creek Greenway at East Lake B 1.2 mi
Holley Avenue Trail I 0.4 mi
ACIPCO Greenway C 2.4 mi
Avenue F Trail I 2.9 mi
Avenue W Trail I 2.2 mi
Thomas Neighborhood Greenway and Wade Nature Preserve K 2.7 mi
Graymont Avenue Trail D 2.6 mi
Center Street Trail D 1.6 mi
3rd Street North Trail I 1.4 mi
Highland Park Trail I 1.4 mi
Five Points West Trail E 1.6 mi
Coalburg Greenway A 3.0 mi
Wylam Greenway A 2.4 mi
33rd Avenue North Trail F 1.3 mi
Carver High School Trail F 1.2 mi
29th Avenue Trail I 1.0 mi
35th Avenue Trail E 1.5 mi
East Lake Boulevard Trail G 6.0 mi
Airport Greenway A 7.1 mi
Village Creek Connector K 1.5 mi
US Highway 31 Greenway A 2.7 mi
Shuttlesworth Drive Trail I 2.6 mi
Vanderbilt Road Connector F 0.4 mi
AL North-South Bike Route #2 H 17.0 mi
6th Place Trail I 0.4 mi
County Road 80 Trail H 1.3 mi
Airport to Village Creek Connector B 0.3 mi
Ensley Park Greenway B 0.6 mi
Ensley Park Greenway
Existing Pedestrian Bridge over I-59
Ensley Greenway B 0.9 mi
Fair Park Greenway A 0.3 mi
Vanderbilt Road Trail E 0.2 mi
43rd Street Connector I 0.5 mi
Howze-Sanford Greenway B 0.5 mi
Pratt City Highway Trail G 1.1 mi
Cherry Avenue Trail I 1.3 mi
Avenue M Trail I 0.6 mi
Ensley Park Connector I 0.1 mi
Second Creek Connector 2.3 mi
Industrial Trail Connector 1.3 mi
Village Creek Greenway at Norwood B 0.7 mi