Please, remember the 'share' in the South Mountain's shared-use path

By Tom Herrmann / ADOT Communications

Shared Used PathWhen the shared-use path along the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway in Ahwatukee opened about a month ago, the opening-day crowd could not have been more excited. Individuals and groups on bicycles moved quickly down the path, along with some on skateboards and even one woman on Rollerblades. The ladies’ cross country team from Desert Vista High School used the path for a morning run.

That was the primary objective when the Arizona Department of Transportation added the path to plans for the freeway: Creating a path to be shared by all members of the community regardless of their fitness level, age or even species (leashed dogs and horses are also allowed to use the path). In the interest of safety, no motorized vehicles are permitted on the path, but everyone else – from young parents walking with a small child, to older area residents casually walking to get some exercise, to serious cyclists looking to ride fast – is welcome.

Sadly, within the first week after the path opened, there were reports that not everyone is playing well with others. Some are acting as if their use of the path has a higher priority than others.

That’s wrong. The path belongs to everyone.

On the adjacent freeway, drivers don’t win priority because their vehicle is larger or shinier or newer than others. Safe driving rules apply to everyone. Share the road.

Share the path. Please. And thank you.

One last item: You’ll also be sharing the path, on limited occasions, with work trucks. In the next few weeks, those trucks may be completing work adjacent to the freeway. Sometimes they will be maintaining utilities. But that will only happen when there are no alternatives for accessing the work, and drivers know to look for cyclists, walkers and others enjoying the path. We apologize in advance for any inconvenience.