Rail Trail Newsletter 11-26-2018 #28

Here's another issue filled with interesting stories from all over. It is amazing how much is going on in this realm. As I mentioned last issue, if you see this text: " [Message clipped]  View entire message ." Then you’ll need to click on the link to see the entire missive. This is important because the link to the archive of past stories is found way down at the bottom.

This is actually my favorite time of year. Real estate slows down a bit in the late fall and there are always some good gatherings of friends and clients in both evenings and during the day. This year is no different. Earlier this month was a fun event in Worcester hosted by the Greater Worcester Land Trust. This is a great org led by my old friends Colin Novick and Allen Fletcher. Well over 50 people were on hand to honor another old friend, Colleen Abrams, and her work on the Mass Central Rail Trail. A great time was had by all.

In a couple of weeks there will be a nice morning gathering at Philanthropy Massachusetts' HQ in Boston that will help bring major foundations and other funders into the world of trail development.

Do you remember the quote by Daniel Burnham?
Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood and probably themselves will not be realized. Make big plans; aim high in hope and work, remembering that a noble, logical diagram once recorded will never die, but long after we are gone be a living thing, asserting itself with ever-growing insistency.

Well the "BIG PLAN" in Massachusetts is the Mass Central Rail Trail. Tying that concept in with the fact that DOTs love Bike-ped bridges. (See this story in City Lab a few months ago). Well, since there are a few bridges/viaducts missing on the MCRT, I think it is time to look at the MCRT as the Big Plan for Massachusetts.

AND one of my favorite blogs out there is BLOGGING BELMONT by Paul Roberts. This week that blog has news about the MCRT in Belmont.

Have a Happy Holiday Season.

Craig Della Penna
413 575 2277
Sugar Maple Trailside Inn
62 Chestnut Street
Northampton, MA 01062
"In the News"
 and Updates About the Longest Rail Trail Project in New England
More news about the MCRT
and its connecting paths
I've known Colleen Abrams for about 25 years and have always been in awe of her and of what she's accomplished in Central Mass. Recently The Greater Worcester Land Trust held an event to salute her and her work. I went to the event and had a great time seeing not only Colleen, but a host of other folks I haven't seen in a long time--like Colin Novick and Allen Fletcher, the ultimate tag team for good things happening in Worcester. Click here to go to the nice story about Colleen and her work.
An important morning event for community Rail Trail leaders .

The Philanthropy Massachusetts (formerly Associated Grant Makers) is hosting an event that should be of interest to those in the rail trail community. Meet the Donors! December 13, 2018 from 8:30 to noon . Join Philanthropy MA as they welcome a panel with a range of interest areas under the large umbrella topic of community development. Our panelists include funders of housing initiatives, healthy alternative transportation options, bike paths/bike-ability, connectivity, food systems and more! Read more here .
What should Boston be doing to make the city safer for bicycles?
"If we invested in better alternatives, people would choose them. "
Boston has recently hit  a number of bike infrastructure milestones  — a two-way bike path down the middle of the Causeway Street, traffic lights for cyclists, redesigned intersections, and even a bike rotary in Jamaica Plain. Progress? Sure. Read more .
Here's the location of the missing bridge in Clinton. The right side of the image above is the western portal of the 1,000' tunnel. The gold standard of putting in a new bike-ped bridge in place of a missing or deficient one is The Schell Bridge in Northfield. 515 feet long over the CT River, this bridge was forgotten and until it was placed-on the 11 Most Endangered List of Preservation Mass. Now, after 14 years of advocacy to save it, it is now only two years away from a full replacement as a bike-ped bridge. I'm certain that a replacement of the bridge in Clinton won't take that long .
Blogging Belmont by Paul Roberts is a great resource for the folks in Belmont to know what is going on in their town on a host of issues. However, the readers of this missive are interested in the Mass Central Rail Trail and this blog is a resource that I'll be bringing forward whenever there is a story of interest to the MCRT people. You're going to love this.
Communities on the 
 on the MCRT and their websites

Did you know that many communities (or groups like land trusts) on the MCRT alignment are working on their section of the trail? 

Here are links to websites where you can learn who the contact person is, when these groups meet, when hearings are being planned and how to sign up to get notices sent to you directly.
Belmont: Link here  to the town appointed committee. 
Belmont: Link here  to the Belmont Citizens Forum.
Somerville: Friends of the Community Path's Facebook page is here
Waltham: Link here to the Waltham Land Trust's site. Link here to the Waltham Bike Committee. And link here to the City's page on the MCRT.
Weston: Link here .
Wayland: Link here
Sudbury: Link here for the N-S intersecting trail--Bruce Freeman Rail Trail. 
Hudson: Link here .  
Berlin: Link here goes to the town's Rail Trail Committee. Once on that page, you can sign up to get notices of meetings, agendas, minutes, etc. They also have a pretty nice website w pix of the future trail. Link here .
Clinton: Link here .
Wachusett Greenways area: Link here .
East Quabbin Land Trust service area: Link here .  
Ware: Check out the new FaceBook page. Link here
Belchertown/Northampton area: Link here .
Rail Trail safety
By David Mark
With the completion of the Assabet River Rail Trail in Maynard and Acton, many people are discovering the joys of not sharing their exercise space with cars and trucks. Read more .
At the end of July, the Town submitted an $8.5 million dollar grant proposal to the Federal Department of Transportation (“DOT”) to reconstruct Industrial Drive and build a separated bike/pedestrian path. Read more .
Friends of the Northern Rail Trail, in NH has engaged students from Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College to propose how the trail could be extended from Glen Road, Lebanon and through Westboro RR Yard and on to White River Jct., VT. This would include developing a plan to implement a shared-use of the RR bridge over the CT River. Read more
By Maureen Berzok
EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ - In a phased approach to creating a sustainable, contemporary community, Mayor Brad Cohen sees the bike path plan as part of the overall vision to create an East Brunswick that will attract young people. Read more . [btw, I should mention that the Millennial generation is the largest buying cohort in the U.S. today and they don't 'get' places where a rail trail is a controversial or scary thing. CDP]
By Linda Woods Curtin
After a three decade-long effort, a new local recreation area is open to the public. The Tri-Community Greenway, a project first proposed in the 1980s, was finally completed earlier this fall. The Greenway is a 6.6-mile, multi-use trail that starts at Ginn Field in Winchester, winds through Woburn, and ends at Recreation Park in Stoneham. Read more .
by I ke Gaffney
Landscape designers laid out proposals to make street crossings safer for the Saugus stretch of the Northern Strand Community Trail.
The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs and town co-hosted a meeting on Nov. 7 to update the public on the trail that is currently in the preliminary design phase.
The city of Albany is planning to start construction next year on the much-anticipated link between the Helderberg-Hudson Rail Trail and the Mohawk-Hudson Bike-Hike Trail. The South End Connector  is a key piece of the region's growing network of alternative transportation paths. Read more .
Putnam Rail Trail to Become Bronx-Yonkers Pathway
The City of Yonkers has been collaborating with Groundwork Hudson Valley, a community environmental non-profit, as well as corporate, foundation and state partners to bring the Yonkers Greenway to life.
Extension of the Cape Cod Rail Trail into Wellfleet should be open in 2019
Click on the image above to read the Environmental Notification Form. The project is 2.2 miles long and is currently at the 75% design stage.
More Important Stories From Around the Country and Sometimes Beyond
Maybe now they can change the name. “Gap’’ no longer seems accurate to describe a missing segment of a bicycle and pedestrian trail that keeps two counties disconnected. Read more.
Defensive street architecture is designed to prevent terrorist attacks. But it could also double as a way to bring strangers together. Read more .
All across the state, work has been progressing on various projects that are part of the historic $200 million invested in the creation of the flagship of the trail network. Read more .
Call for Entries: International Design Ideas Competition
The Western New York Land Conservancy invites designers, architects, landscape architects, urban planners, and artists to submit visionary concepts to a juried competition laying the groundwork to transform the abandoned, 1.5-mile elevated DL&W rail corridor connecting  Buffalo ’s downtown with its waterfront through three distinct and historic neighborhoods. Read more.

The Delivery Trike is Coming
by David Janowski NYTimes
The T3 is a tricycle built for grown-ups, and it is not for play.
Weighing 150 pounds, it has an aluminum frame and sits on three small but durable bicycle tires with a heavy-duty suspension system in front — one meant for all-terrain vehicles — which helps to navigate the city’s innumerable potholes. It can haul up to three times its weight, nearly a quarter-ton of cargo. To go uphill, a single click on the handlebar unleashes a power-boost from an electric-hub in the rear wheel. Read more
The section of the Walnut Creek Greenway Trail leading up to Lake Johnson is crowded in the early evening. Runners and bikers work up a sweat avoiding couples and families out for a leisurely stroll.
Once, not everyone was excited about Raleigh’s greenways. Many homeowners and developers feared that greenways would bring crime into their neighborhood. But citywide surveying from 2014 shows that Raleigh residents  prioritize greenways  over other kinds of park facilities. Read more .
RI Turnpike Authority considers adding bike paths to Pell, Jamestown bridges
The authority has determined it is feasible to add a path for pedestrians and bicyclists to the Pell, Jamestown-Verrazzano and Mount Hope bridges; the Sakonnet River Bridge already has such a path.
JAMESTOWN, R.I. — With the 50th anniversary of the Pell Bridge on the horizon next year, the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority is reflecting on its history, while also looking ahead to what the next 50 years might hold for the structure. Read more
LOCAL   By  Lawrence Budd  
A bipartisan effort to improve Ohio’s 3,000-plus-mile network of trails, headed in part by a Warren County state lawmaker, has been an example for other states in driving improvement of outdoors opportunities, officials said.
The bipartisan  Ohio Legislative Trails Caucus , thought to be the first of its kind, is headed by two state senators, Steve Wilson, a Republican from Warren County, and Sean O’Brien, a Democrat from Trumbull County. Read more. I should also mention that the first Rail Trail Bike-Ped Caucus at a state house was in 2003, in Massachusetts. Led by former State Rep Anne Paulsen. CDP