Trail Leads to Historic Valve-House

by Steve Ward, Park Manager
Last fall Radnor Lake volunteers and staff celebrated the opening of the Historic Valve-House Trail at Radnor Lake. This project has been years in the making, with the actual construction of the trail beginning in January 2012.
Volunteers, including MTSU students, REI staff, Friends of Radnor Lake board members and park staff, worked side-by-side in constructing this new trail.
The Historic Valve-House Trail is a rare addition to the trail system that provides visitors with an historical interpretive hike. Signage explains how the lake was created as an industrial site to provide water for use by the L & N Railroad.
Completing the trail is the first phase of this project. The next two phases will be to reconstruct the Valve-house and then restore and expand the caretaker house.
Reconstruct the actual valve-house This will be a volunteer project we plan to begin in January 2014 if we obtain funding. Reconstruction will be volunteer-based beginning next January.” After getting the appropriate approvals, we plan to deconstruct the current decayed and flood damaged structure and rebuild it in identical size and specifications using as much of the old structure as possible. We will also preserve the large underground valve and install interpretive signage within the structure.

Caretaker House

Once we are able to obtain outside funding, the original structure will be restored and later additions removed. The interior will be remodeled to accommodate the historical interpretation displays from the visitor center. In addition, we would remove existing additions to the structure that are failing and were added at later time periods. This will restore the house to its original shape. Long-term goals would be to have this available for interpretive programming and as a classroom for our education partners.
A special thanks to all who made this happen:

  • Park volunteers
  • Chuck Robinson, Brenda Mikec and REI
  • Friends of Radnor Lake
  • Tennessee State Parks
  • Dr. Doug Heffington and all of his MTSU students.
  • Friends of Radnor Lake board.
  • Charley Hankla
  • Greer Tidwell
  • Gary and Adam Keckley
  • Commissioner Bob Martineau
  • Deputy Commissioner Brock Hill
  • Director Mike Robertson
  • Joan LaGrasse and staff of Imagen, LLC
  • David Adderley and staff of Hi-Tech Signs
  • John Froschauer, Middle Tennessee regional interpreter
  • Forestry Stewardship Grant (Tennessee Division of Forestry)
  • Tennessee State Parks Iris Fund
  • Family and friends of the late Jane Robinson
  • Dan Smith and crew at Granny White Market
  • Moore and Moore Garden Center staff