Connecting Neighborhoods to Our Trails

One of the core missions of the Rachel Carson Trails Conservancy is connecting community assets via our trails. Looking at the RCT, we connect North Park, Hampton Community Park, Emmerling Park, Williams Street Park, Agan Park and Harrison Hills Park, with a spur trail to Hartwood Acres (extending to Beechwood Farms soon). A few years ago, we extended to the Harmony Trail and in 2023, we are endeavoring to reconnect to the Baker Trail and the budding trail nexus in the Freeport area. Our vision is not just for trails, but an integrated trail system that unites our community.

These parks and municipal assets form the skeleton, but the lifeblood of our community are the families and their homes. The trail already goes through some neighborhoods; Springdale Boro, Murray Hill Estates and Altemoor Drive to name a few. Going forward we will be working to greatly increase the number of people who can walk from their home to the RCT. Internal discussions continue as we establish policy and protocol, and many people will be needed to form the committee necessary to make this a reality.

Here is our vision.

We are looking to connect individual neighborhoods to the trail via spur trails connecting to public streets. This will allow residents of the neighborhood to access the RCT directly, while allowing adjacent neighborhoods to also enjoy the access. Building new trails is a time-consuming process. More often than not, it’s a multiyear process. Given this effort and expense, when we build these neighborhood connections, we want them to be permanent. Therefore, we will require an easement through any private land necessary to reach a public road.

We are fully committed to this effort, and the RCTC will guide and facilitate the connections as follows:

  • We will work with and support any/all groups wishing to connect their neighborhood.
  • We will build and maintain the trail.
  • We will assume any costs associated with procuring the needed easements and trail construction.

The neighborhoods closest to the RCT will of course be the easiest to connect, but even those further away can be connected, perhaps utilizing other partner trails and connections via our Many Trails One Community program.

None of this can become a reality without considerable help from you, our dedicated trail users. Step forward and join our committee, organize your neighborhood to start your connection, or advocate within your community to support this effort. For now, this is an idea, a plan. Help us to make it a reality and help us to connect our community.


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