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One of a handful of western Mississippi communities to salvage a benefit from the abandonment of a 50-mile railroad corridor between Cleveland and Hollandale in 1999, Cleveland railbanked the portion of the line through their city to provide the Crosstie Walk—also known as the Downtown Walking Trail—for local residents and visitors. The paved trail, which runs through the city’s quaint downtown, is lit at night, with benches and trash receptacles provided as well.
The corridor was originally built by the Yazoo and Mississippi Valley Railroad before being merged into the Illinois Central Railroad and ultimately ending up under the control of the Columbus and Greenville Railway. The Martin & Sue King Railroad Heritage Museum near the trail’s midpoint features exhibits on the area’s extensive railroad history, as well as artifacts and one of the largest model train layouts in Mississippi.
Just across the street from the museum, the restored original train depot is now home to the Bolivar County Literacy Foundation. The trail also encircles the former Yazoo and Mississippi Valley Railroad turntable at its newer southern end adjacent to a recently constructed neighborhood, where street names such as Turntable Way, Turntable Place and Turntable Crossing honor the site’s previous use.
Shorter trails on the same former rail corridor include the Renova Heritage Walking Trail, Shelby Trails and Duncan Walking Trail to the north and the Boyle Rail-Trail, Shaw Rail-Trail and Hollandale Rail-Trail to the south.
Parking for the Crosstie Walk can be found adjacent to the trail along Sharpe Avenue for most of its route. Dedicated parking lots are also available at S. Court Street, South Street/Shelby Street and College Street.
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