Saturday, January 31, 2009
Check out the photos of the new bridge over Salmon Brook in East Granby. This is the one that went through several iterations of design and bid, each time rising in cost, and for which funding was finally approved following generous support from trail supporters and the Farmington Valley Trail Council. Hope to see you there when the weather clears. We are getting closer to completing this vital trail from New Haven, CT to Northampton, MA.
Some good news! Word reached the Plainville Town Manager this week that the town has been awarded a $45,000 grant for a design study of the proposed trail. This was accomplished with the strong support of the Town Council, and the hard work of the Town Manager and State Representative Betty Boukus. Just to be certain he wasn't dreaming, Robert Lee called the State Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to confirm that the money was really there, and it is.
The Town will need to review the requirements of the grant to be certain that all its terms are acceptable. The next step after that will likely be preparation of a Request for Proposals (RFP) and a list of potential design firms with experience in trail design. We are not sure of any more details yet, but this is truly good news.
Saturday, January 17, 2009
Closer to home, we have finished our 9 month long effort to complete a map of the proposed trail through town. It is big. Really big. 15 feet in length and the first time we have been able to show our vision of the route the trail could follow. It is based on our primary assumption that the railroad (PanAm/Southern) will keep freight traffic moving on the north-south line, currently serving 3 local businesses. To view this PDF file, go to this link, click on "Public" and open the PGAFinalRouteMap and view it in Adobe Reader. Tell us what you think by leaving a comment.
Here is a link to some photos of the installation of two bridges in Northampton, MA. We will put up another link for a new bridge in Hamden, CT when we get the latest video from there. These bridges are hugely important to the trail building efforts as they provide the most effective way to separate trail traffic from vehicular traffic on the streets they cross. Here in Plainville, our plans include a major bridge at the north end of the trail over Northwest Drive, an increasingly busier vehicular artery in town. Another bridge will be needed to cross the Pequabuck River about one half mile south of Northwest Drive, that is, unless the Pan Am/Southern Railway abandons the bridge they currently don't use over the River. Again, based on continued rail service on the north-south rail right-of-way, we have proposed another bridge over the "throat" of the rail yard at the east end that will carry trail traffic over the rails as well as provide a terrific vantage point for viewing existing train operations. Lots of work ahead for us, but, for now, we are encouraged by the progress shown here.