In New Jersey: a Future Trail, a Vital Connection

Posted 10/29/14 by Tom Sexton in Building Trails

Photo © Rails-to-Trails Conservancy/Jake Lynch

If you are a resident of the New Jersey communities of Merchantville, Maple Shade or Moorestown, you are lucky to live so close to so many great regional attractions.

But it is not always so easy to be able to safely ride or walk to all the places you want to go.

Imagine hopping on your bike and riding on a trail down to Adventure Aquarium, the Battleship USS New Jersey, or the baseball stadium, Campbell's Field, down on the Delaware River.

Once the ramp leading up to the Ben Franklin Bridge is completed, you'll be able to access the Ben Franklin Bridge Walkway, a separated path that takes you up and over the Delaware River and into downtown Philly, where you could spend the afternoon exploring the city.

Or continue your ride on the newly-opened Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk, or the myriad of other trail connections throughout the region. This is not an impossible dream. In fact, it's a very realistic scenario!

For New Jersey residents, this proposed trail - from Moorestown, through Merchantville and the southern tip of Pennsauken Township and to the Ben Franklin Bridge - would mean being able to get to and from Philadelphia without relying on a car. But what does it mean for other residents of the Camden/Philadelphia metro area?

Photo and concept rendering of disused bridge over SR 130 in Pennsauken Township © RTC

It would be a key component in the Circuit. What's the Circuit? The Circuit is a planned 750-mile network of bicycle and pedestrian trails in the Greater Philadelphia region, 300 miles of which already exist. As you read this, RTC and a coalition of local organizations are working to make it happen.

The Circuit is all about using biking and walking pathways to connect people to jobs, communities, and parks in the region. A trail from Burlington and Camden counties to the Ben Franklin Bridge would instantly make walking and biking an easier option for getting around your community.

A few short sections of this link to the Ben Franklin Bridge are already in place, and the other segments are available and in development. Stay tuned for what you can do to help us build this vital trail corridor. We want you to get excited!

At Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, we think big. We invite you to join us in our big thinking - envision what this proposed trail connection could mean for you and communities in southern New Jersey. We want you on board!

Share this blog post with your friends and neighbors, by email or through facebook. And if you are interested in helping RTC continue to promote this great trail connection, I'd love to hear from you - email me at tom@railstotrails.org.

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