Construct Multi-Use Pathway in Hatteras Island District

Cape Hatteras National Seashore » Construct Multi-Use Pathway in Hatteras Island District » Document List

The National Park Service (NPS) has approved the construction of a new multiple use pathway along Lighthouse Road, in the Hatteras Island District of Cape Hatteras National Seashore (Seashore). This action was identified in the Seashore's 1984 General Management Plan (GMP) which presented the need for a "bikeway" within the Seashore and included Lighthouse Road as the location for this path. GMP identified a 4-foot-wide bicycle path on both sides of the road from North Carolina Highway 12 (NC12) to the Cape Point Campground.

Connectivity in and near the Seashore is an important component of the park's purpose to provide access and opportunities for the benefit and enjoyment of visitors.

Lighthouse Road provides access from NC12 and the village of Buxton to popular visitor use areas within this park district. The Lighthouse Road corridor is utilized by multiple modes of transportation other than passenger, recreational and camping vehicles and include pedestrians, bicyclists, and other non-motorized traffic which use the road shoulders as a pathway to access the park.

With so many different modes of transportation all utilizing the same two-way road, the grass shoulders immediately adjacent to the pavement end up being the surface absorbing pedestrians and bicycle traffic. The shoulders are sufficiently wide to allow for passage along Lighthouse Road for most of the distance of the road; however, there is no designated and safe pathway for these groups of visitors.

The selected action will construct a 1.6 mile long 10-12' concrete or asphalt multi-use pathway on one side of the Lighthouse Road to the Cape Hatteras Lighthouse and to other beach access areas. A five-foot wide vegetative buffer will be created between the new path and Lighthouse Road and trailheads will be constructed at each access point of the pathway. An interpretive plaza will be constructed with bike racks, pedestrian seating, and a picnic pavilion at the corner of the intersection of the pathway and the Old Lighthouse Beach parking areas. A comfort station with bathroom facilities and plumbed for water for drinking fountains and/or spraying off sand, will also be constructed within the interpretive plaza to accommodate visitors who are using the pathway and beach access areas. Project actions will also require minor repairs to three culverts within the project area along Lighthouse Road.

The NPS will complete a special regulation to authorize and manage bicycle use, including electric bicycles, to comply with 36 CFR § 4.30 (the Bicycle Rule), which contains regulations that manage bicycle use within national park system units. Some electric assisted modes of transportation may be permitted along the pathways, such as motorized wheelchairs.

The Document List link on the left side of the page has all the public documents on this project.

Contact Information

Sabrina Henry