I am upset at the recent announcement of the closure of Heard Park and the fitness/hiking trail running through Training Area 7 from Dixie Street to 7th Armored Division Rd. If you are not familiar with the street names, this closure affects almost the entire fitness trail, and the closure will be for the entire summer, from 1 May to 15 Aug. This comes as a huge surprise and disappointment to me as I walk the trails at least 5 days a week and have depended on the easy access to nature, peace and quiet for the past 2 years.
Why was only 1 week’s notice given before the trails closed? Why are these trails being closed for the Cadet Command, and why aren’t they being directed to use the training areas that are already closed off to the public?
Are they going to be closed every summer for 4 months?
These recreation trails have only been open since 2012 as a public works incentive for residents
to enjoy. According to Col. Jenkins, they were created as a direct response to the leisure needs survey of Fort Knox residents, not as a needs survey for unit training. These trails were built for the public and are used by the schools for running and track. They were even used in a cross country meet last year. These trails belong to the residents of Fort Knox and should be available for everyone to use, and I feel robbed. It does not seem as if any consideration was given for the schools, residents and employees who use these trails. The Garrison should not close these trails for an extended period of time for unit training needs—which should be done in the training areas that are already closed to the public. Considering the amount of people I see on the trails, the trails are well used. Closing these trails with little notice for the entire summer shows a huge lack of respect from the Garrison to the residents of Fort Knox and sends a clear message that the Garrison has little concern for morale, welfare and recreation for the residents of Fort Knox.