Rail Trail Newsletter 10-5-2018 #26
I hope you are enjoying early fall this year. In this month's issue, we've come upon some nice letters, including one from Vince Inglese thanking us for putting on the Golden Spike 2018 Conference this summer. One of the reasons I like conferences is that they help to re-inspire pro-trail groups: To keep them in the game, to keep them from getting burned out by the anti-path folks out there. Yes, there are still a few "wars" going on out there. Places where angst is the watchword in several communities where a trail is being proposed.

Helping to organize a conference on occasion, or compiling this E-newsletter helps keep my "battle-hardened" veterans in the game, and not melt away. Thanks, Vince, for your work in your community and your nice letter below.

And a 'hot off the press' story this afternoon about Belmont reinforces the fact the pro-trail advocates need to be steeled for the long term here. Developing this network isn't a sprint. It is a marathon.

Oh, and beware of attacking owls and brazen moose on those scary rail trails.

Craig Della Penna
413 575 2277
"In the News"
 and Updates About the Longest Rail Trail Project in New England
More news about the MCRT and and follow up about Golden Spike 2018
Local trail advocates attend conference and share info at Olde Home Day in Clinton.
At the Golden Spike 2018 Conference, held July 27 + 28 at Union Station in Northampton, brought together Rail Trail advocates, transportation and legislative policy makers and trail users from CT and Mass. Local organizations participating in the conference included the Clinton Greenway Conservation Trust (CGCT) and Wachusett Greenways. READ MORE
Pix above is in Clinton at the Wachusett Reservoir and shows the MCRT viaduct crossing the Nashua River at the face of the dam.

The Belmont Community Path needs Belmont Community Support (Once Again) by bloggingbelmont • October 5, 2018
The Community Path is close to being realized but opposition from a small group of abutters still threatens to delay or derail this needed investment. Take a moment to email the Com-munity Path Implementation Committee and the Board of Selectmen and voice your support for a simple, safe North Side route along the railroad tracks to move the Community Path project forward! Read more
Rec'd a nice letter!
D ear Craig,
Congratulations to you, the presenters, attendees and organizers for a great conference at the Golden Spike event in July.
It was an outstanding opportunity to absorb the positivity and expertise from a group of experts at the State level as well as towns in both Massachusetts and Connecticut.
The hard work and determination that was inherent in the words of all those that helped to establish these recreational paths and pride that these communities exhibit for these prized assets is an inspiration for other communities embarking on this rewarding journey.

Thank you.
Vince Inglese
President, Friends of the Lynnfield Rail Trail
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 .
OUR WALK IN THE WOODS: Marshfield Mass’s Rail Trail
In four previous installments, the Mariner’s James Kukstis met up with Recreation Trails Committee member Ned Bangs and other hiking fans in town to begin an exploration of each of Marshfield’s trails. Over the next few months, we will continue to chronicle these journeys.
During a number of our previous hikes, Ned and I had discussed how the paths had come to be, and in most cases it was safe to assume that the oldest trails originated with animals and were solidified by human use. On our most recent hike, though, a different beast altogether formed the way: the train. Read more here .
Keene warns joggers about swooping Owls on trail
Officials in Keene, NH have posted warning signs along on a popular trail after hikers reported an owl swooping at them.
The signs were posted along the Cheshire Trail. Runner John Maj-onen said he runs along the trial a few times each week, but he hasn't had an encounter with the owl.
"The only birds I've been swooped by are the smaller birds, like red-winged blackbirds and things like that," he said.
City officials said at least three people reported an owl swooping over them over the weekend.
Bull moose takes short stroll on Ashuwillticook Rail Trail in Cheshire, MA
CHESHIRE — No moosetake about it. A Facebook post with video of a full-grown bull moose sauntering south on the Ashuwillticook Rail Trail has been raising some eyebrows. 
That was indeed a moose, according to Cheshire Police Sgt. Michael Alibozek.
"He showed up a couple of days ago on the trail," Alibozek said, adding that there were a few calls to the police about it Friday evening. Read more here.
NY Governor Cuomo Announces Winners of Reimagine the Canals Competition
Global Contest Sought Unique Ideas to Spur Economic Development Along Canal Corridor, Boost Tourism and Recreation Spending
Winning Entries Include New Neighborhoods Along the Canal and Festival to Celebrate Waterfront and New York's Craft-Beverage Industry.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the two winning proposals from the Reimagine the Canals Competition have been selected.  Read more .

Gap Filled In Farmington Canal Heritage Trail In Cheshire, CT
A sign along the  Farmington  Canal Heritage Trail depicts the construction of the 80-mile-long waterway as it entered the wilds of Cheshire in the 1820s.
“This part of the canal was the most difficult and expensive to build,” noted canal historian Dr. Carl E. Walter. “Irish laborers worked in knee-deep mud to cut the canal through Cheshire’s swamps.” Read more.
Roll With It: Two Wheeling in Burlington
With its steep hills and deep winter snowdrifts, Burlington may not, at first, seem like a cyclist's paradise. But bikes, trikes and the even occasional unicycle (because hipsters) can be found on blacktops all over the Queen City and beyond. And not just in warmer months: A sizable number of crazy people — er, enthusiasts — cycle in the winter, too, which should give you an idea of the city's vibrant bike culture. Read more here .

Rail Trail Parking Plan for Lynnfield Compares Favorably With Others
While awaiting a potential October hearing date from the Department of Transportation, the Friends of the Lynnfield Rail Trail looked at the issue of parking.
Based on parking data at four area Rail Trails/Recreational Paths — in Winchester, Danvers, Topsfield, and Salisbury — Lynnfield and Wakefield have ample parking in comparison. Read more here .
The team behind the project to map out an alternative transportation network for the Capital District of NY area gathered some beautiful drone video to go along with the report. It's embedded above. Click here to go to the video.

CEDC Selects Weston & Sampson for Rail Trail Feasibility Study
September 25, 2018
Hudson, NY – Columbia Economic Development Corporation (CEDC) has selected Weston & Sampson, a design, engineering and environmental services firm with offices in Albany, to perform consulting work to determine the feasibility of constructing a multi-use Rail Trail to connect Hudson’s Oakdale Park to the Harlem Valley Rail Trail along the Boston and Albany rail corridor.
Weston & Sampson has extensive experience in planning and designing trail networks across the country, including numerous trails in the Northeast. Read more here .
Recent visit spoke to sense of community Laconia offers
To The Daily Sun,
My husband and I have just spent a glorious long weekend here in the Winnipesaukee Lake region. We were drawn to riding bikes by the WOW website, with the WOW rail-trails, including its spectacular new section to Belmont. We stopped to explore Laconia with its vibrant shops, artwork, history, and architecture. That its residents, young and old, greeted us and one another as they walked the trails speaks highly of the sense of community this area offers. Read more .

L.L.Bean Pledges $1 Million to The Trust for Public Land to Create Parks Where They’re Needed Most
Internationally recognized outdoor retailer  L.L.Bean , best known for its legendary customer service and high-quality gear and apparel that help to further people’s enjoyment of the outdoors, is proud to announce its partnership with  The Trust for Public Land  with a $1 million investment to help connect more people to nature.  Read mor e.

A bunch of firsts in Boston bicycling infrastructure
By  Adam Vaccaro  GLOBE STAFF  OCTOBER 03, 2018
It wasn’t that long ago that Boston would slap some green paint across a thin strip of city streets and local cyclists would  mark it as a major milestone.
But nowadays, cyclists are starting to see more of the real thing: bike lanes that are separated physically from cars, sometimes with concrete buffers. Several city and state projects have brought a bunch of new firsts for Boston’s two-wheeler...

Sections of Erie Canalway, Albany County rail trails open
  A ceremony with state officials and cyclists on Wednesday marked the opening of a new 5-mile section of the Erie Canal-way Trail from Pattersonville to the south side of Amsterdam. The eastern section of the trail is on the north side of the intersection of Route 5S and Scotch Church Road. Read more here .
Funding Secured for Phase 1 of the Bourne Rail Trail 
The prospects for completing the Bourne Rail Trail took a significant step forward this week when Bourne residents voted at the Special Town Meeting on Monday night to allocate $50,000 in funding to support the development of Phase 1 of the Bourne Rail Trail. The Town’s CPC Committee, along with the Board of Selectmen, had previously unanimously supported the funding request from the Town Administrator’s Advisory Committee on Pedestrian Bicycle Pathway. Read more .
More Stories From Around the Country
6 Places Where Cars, Bikes, and Pedestrians All Share the Road As Equals
If you aren't a traffic engineer or an urban planner, the word woonerf-probably looks like a typo, or maybe the Twitter handle of whoever runs marketing for Nerf (woo!). But you might want to get familiar with the term—Dutch for "living street"—because the urban design concepts it embraces are on the rise. Read more here .

John McCain’s Unlikely Legacy Project in Phoenix
In his Phoenix office, Senator John McCain kept a poster on the wall depicting Tempe Town Lake and the commercial developments that sprang up there after the man-made waterway opened in 1999. Wellington “Duke” Reiter, executive director of Arizona State University’s City Exchange Program, said that when he saw the picture, he knew McCain understood the power of the project. Read more .
Cycling Is Key to Safer, Healthier, More Vital Cities
Frustrated by the obstacles to urban cycling in North America, Melissa and Chris Bruntlett traveled with their two kids from Vancouver to the Netherlands in 2016 to take a deep five-week dive into places that do cycling better. Traversing cities in the Netherlands by bike, they found that cycling is not just a better way to get around; when done right, it leads to healthier, safer, more vibrant, more family-friendly communities. Read more.
Protected bikeways make cities safer and boost the economy
Bicycling in cities before the days of protected bikeways was either terrifying or exhilarating, depending on your level of risk aversion. As protected bike-ways have proliferated, they've made cities safer for cyclists and pedestrians — and for motorists, too. They can even help neighborhoods thrive economically, as highlighted in this Vox piece about New York's first parking-protected bikeway. Read more here .
Three in four Swiss voters back enshrining cycling in constitution
Three in four Swiss voters have backed a proposal enshrining cycling in the country’s federal constitution in a referendum today.
The question of whether “promoting bike paths” should be added to an existing provision of promoting footpaths and hiking trails was supported by 73.6% of the electorate. Read more here .

The Most Dangerous Place to Bicycle in America is Pinellas County, Fla.
 by Scott Calvert and Max Rust
Trung Huynh used a marked crosswalk with flashing yellow lights when he rode his bike across busy, six-lane Park Boulevard in Pinellas Park, Fla., one morning in June.
The 18-year-old didn’t make it to the median.
A white Chevy Malibu going an estimated 45 mph slammed into him and his bike, police said. Mr. Huynh died at the scene. Read more here .