Inter-Urban Trail (IA)


Inter-Urban Trail (IA) Facts

States: Iowa
Counties: Polk
Length: 1.3 miles
Trail end points: Neal Smith Trail and Urbandale Avenue and 34th Street
Trail surfaces: Asphalt, Concrete
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6015594
Trail activites: Bike, Inline Skating, Wheelchair Accessible, Walking

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Inter-Urban Trail (IA) Description

Des Moines' Inter-Urban Trail was opened in 1998 on the abandoned tracks of the Urbandale streetcar line. Residents and visitors of Iowa could ride the electric-powered trolley from Urbandale to Des Moines for just a five cent fare from 1905 to 1949. Later, the tracks were converted to accomodate freight traffic.

Abandoned in 1982, the centerpiece of the Inter-Urban Trail is the concrete-decked Wakonsa Bridge, which takes pedestrians and bike riders over the Des Moines River. A convenient connection to the Neal Smith Trail is provided on the east bank of the river, offering easy travel to Big Creek State Park and the Saylorville area to the north and downtown Des Moines to the south. On the west bank, the Trestle to Trestle Trail offers access to Johnston, one of Des Moines' northern suburbs.

To the west of the Wakonsa Bridge, the Inter-Urban Trail cuts directly through the heavily wooded Beaverdale Park. The asphalt trail then ends its off-road route at the intersection of Urbandale Avenue and 34th Street in the heart of the Beaverdale neighborhood of Des Moines. Those wishing to travel even farther west can continue along Urbandale Avenue's bike lanes.

Parking and Trail Access

Access to the Inter-Urban Trail is available at nearly any point off of Urbandale Avenue, but your best bet is the intersection with 34th Street or 30th Street. East of the Des Moines River, trail access is only available off of the Neal Smith Trail. Public parking is available at Beaverdale Park or on most of the residential streets of Beaverdale. As always, please be respectful of the property of the residents of the neighborhood.


Nearby Trails

Neal Smith Trail

Iowa - 26 miles

The Neal Smith Trail, which connects to the John Pat Dorrian Trail in downtown Des Moines, runs through a portion of Des Moines itself before leaving the ...

Trestle to Trestle Trail

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Polk County's Trestle to Trestle Trail stretches from Des Moines to Johnston, one of its northern suburbs. The 3.7 mile asphalt trail, which runs near ...

John Pat Dorrian Trail

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Waveland Trail

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Walnut Creek Trail (Iowa)

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The Walnut Creek Trail serves as an important trail connector in West Des Moines. On its northern end, it seamlessly links to the Clive Greenbelt Trail, ...

Clive Greenbelt Trail

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Oralabor Gateway Trail

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The Oralabor Gateway Trail is a 5.2 mile concrete-surfaced spur branching off from the Neal Smith Trail south of Saylorville Lake and just north of NW ...

Gay Lea Wilson Trail

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The Gay Lea Wilson Trail, named for a local advocate who first conceived of a network of trails in eastern Polk County in the 1980s, will eventually link ...

Chichaqua Valley Trail

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This scenic Chichaqua Valley Trail runs for 27 miles between Berwick (which lies just northeast of Des Moines) and Baxter, passing through the small communities ...

Great Western Trail (IA)

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The 16.5-mile Great Western Trail in central Iowa is built on a former rail bed for the Chicago Great Western, originally constructed in 1893. The trail ...

Jordan Creek Trail

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The Jordan Creek Trail runs through the affluent Des Moines suburb of West Des Moines, linking houses and apartments to schools and recreational amenities. ...

High Trestle Trail

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The High Trestle Trail is named for the original railroad bridge that spans the Des Moines River between Madrid and Woodward, on the trail's northern end. ...

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