No end in sight for Echo Canyon trailhead renovation - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

No end in sight for Echo Canyon trailhead renovation

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It's one of the most popular hiking trails in the valley. Camelback's Echo Canyon trailhead. But it's been closed all year for construction, and it looks like it may not open any time soon.

That's bad news for hikers now that the weather is finally cooling off.

This is a big project, and they've run into some construction delays building a new bathroom. For the past nine months, Camelback Mountain's Echo Canyon trailhead has been closed for a major renovation project. But just when it will reopen to hikers isn't exactly clear.

"We know that Camelback's immensely popular -- people are really anxious and itching to get back there," says David Urbinato, Phoenix Parks & Recreation Dept.

David Urbinato says Echo Canyon was set to reopen as early as next month. But construction delays have now pushed that to the end of the year or beyond.

"It's a big, big project to a very important, very busy area. And I think what we've seen so far is that people are patient."

From SkyFOX you can see the scope of this $3 million renovation job. It includes a new trail at the beginning of the hike.

"The new section, the lower section, follows the mountain. It's an actual dirt trail that more logically and naturally follows the contours of the mountain."

And this brand new parking lot will double the amount of spaces. It's something hikers say is desperately needed.

"Just more parking so you don't have to loop around twenty laps before you get a spot," says Corey Errett.

"Parking problems everywhere, definitely. So the fact that they're doubling the size -- I know people that hike this mountain twice a day -- so it will be good," says Courtney Rutledge.

The city says they won't put out any date for a possible opening of Echo Canyon until they are just about done with the entire project.

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