A proposed 20-year comprehensive plan for the City of Catoosa, Oklahoma, envisions a 1.2-mile View 66 Trail that connects from Rodger Berry Sports Complex to the iconic Blue Whale.
Fox23 in Tulsa reports the city already has applied for a $2 million grant through the Oklahoma Department of Transportation to pay for the 12-foot-wide asphalt trail that would accommodate pedestrians, scooters and cyclists.
If the city wins the grant, the trail could be built within three years.
Brad Lonberger of Place Strategies that has been hired to oversee the comprehensive plan said a future phase of the trail might connect Catoosa’s Old Town to Rogers Point Park.
Lonberg said he also wants to ensure Catoosa’s trail is compatible with U.S. Department of Transportation plans to eventually build a Route 66 bicycle trail through the region.
The report states the city-owned Blue Whale, which recently marked its 50th anniversary, draws 50,000 visitors a year.
Hugh Davis hand-made the Blue Whale out of concrete and shaped rebar about 1970 as an anniversary gift to his wife. The Blue Whale and its spring-fed pond became a popular swimming hole for locals and travelers along Route 66 alike.
It closed about 1988 and fell into disrepair until it was restored in the early 2000s. Hugh Davis’ son, Blaine, was the caretaker at the property for many years until the city purchased the property in 2021.
(Image of the Blue Whale of Catoosa, Oklahoma, by Ayleen Dority via Flickr)