Mar 11, 2023 - News

How to bike from Elizabeth to Pineville on Charlotte’s greenways

Artists Laurel Holtzapple and Shaun Cassidy created "Rivulet." The sculpture sits Westfield and Brandywine meet. Photo: Ashley Mahoney/Axios

Artists Laurel Holtzapple and Shaun Cassidy created "Rivulet." The sculpture sits where Westfield and Brandywine meet. Photo: Ashley Mahoney/Axios

Greenways are one of my favorite parts about living in Charlotte.

State of play: My partner and I biked from Elizabeth to the President James K. Polk State Historic Site in Pineville last weekend.

  • I shared our plans to do so in last Saturday’s newsletter, and some readers wanted to know how they could it, too.
  • It took about three and a half hours, which included stretching our legs at the halfway point.

Pro tip: Eat something beforehand, pack plenty of water and wear sunscreen.

Here is your guide to tackling more than 20 miles (mostly) on the Cross Charlotte Trail:

  • Once finished, this section of greenway will be “wider, higher and overall better,” Katie Lloyd, Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation senior planner tells Axios.

Back to biking: Take the marked detour along Kings Drive, which will lead you to Freedom Park. There you’ll jump back on the greenway by the tennis courts.

  • Continue along the greenway, and you’ll come out on Princeton Avenue. Continue straight onto Jameston Drive. Then turn right onto Westfield Road, where you’ll pick the greenway back up and stay on it until you reach Brandywine Road.
  • You’ll notice construction at Brandywine, where the city is working on the Brandywine to Tyvola Road (B2T) connector (it’ll open in the second quarter of this year, per the city).
  • Since B2T not currently open, head toward Park Road Shopping Center. Take a left onto Woodlawn Road and cross at the stoplight across from the Taco Bell. Then head up the hill onto Montford Drive.
  • Turn left onto Abbey Place. More hills forthcoming. Turn left onto Hedgemore Drive. Then right onto Mockingbird Lane and follow it until you come to Park Road, where you’ll turn left. You’ll need to cross the street before you get to Selwyn Avenue.
  • Enter the Harris Teeter parking lot on the right hand side of Park Road. A sidewalk in the back of the parking lot next connects you to Buckingham Drive. Turn left onto Buckingham, and follow it until it dead-ends.
  • Pick up the greenway a couple hundred feet away, and then take the greenway all the way down to the Polk site in Pineville.
  • Now turn around and head back!

Yes, but: You may be thinking, “Ashley, I’m tired and hungry!”

Food options: You can pack a picnic and stop along the way, perhaps at Freedom Park, Park Road Park, Huntingtowne Farms or Marsh Park.

the people's market
Prosciutto and fig pizza ($14.99). Photo: Ashley Mahoney/Axios

The bottom line: Your butt will probably be sore, but it’s worth it. Don’t forget to stretch.

Ice cream in a cone with rainbow sprinkles in front of a wall with ice cream in a cone painted on it.
Two Scoops double chocolate ice cream with rainbow sprinkles. Photo: Ashley Mahoney/Axios

Bonus: While you can’t go on the new section of XCLT yet, you can see the new public art. Artists Laurel Holtzapple and Shaun Cassidy created “Rivulet,” a large blue sculpture where Westfield and Brandywine meet. It’s a nod to the tributaries of Little Sugar Creek, the city tells Axios.

  • Cassidy and Holtzapple also created sculpture benches called “Sycamore,” which you’ll see near “Rivulet.”
Sculpture benches on XCLT. Photo: Ashley Mahoney/Axios
Sculpture benches on XCLT. Photo: Ashley Mahoney/Axios
Artists Laurel Holtzapple and Shaun Cassidy created “Rivulet.” Photo: Ashley Mahoney/Axios
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