After a couple of changes, the Dakota County Board on Tuesday approved a plan for development and management of Lebanon Hills Regional Park that includes a controversial paved trail.
About 30 people showed up at the meeting and many weighed in on the plan one more time before it goes to the Metropolitan Council for approval.
In February, the park master plan spurred about 700 comments from the public, the vast majority of them opposing the addition of a paved 6-mile trail. They said it would destroy the natural feel of the 2,000-acre park in Apple Valley and Eagan.
“What happened to representative government?” said Commissioner Nancy Schouweiler, who voted against the plan along with Commissioner Tom Egan.
Egan said he had never seen something move forward despite so much community opposition in his more than 30 years of public service.
But Commissioner Liz Workman said the plan is a good balance that improves natural resources and provides opportunities for people with disabilities to access the park.
There is more planning that will go into creating the paved trail, Workman added.
“Will we do it in a sensitive manner? Absolutely,” she said.
To make the trail feel more natural, the board decided Tuesday to narrow its width from 10 feet to 8 feet.