A healthy rail-trail rivalry is developing in the Carolinas, with both the Old North State and the Palmetto State taking great strides this month to boost active transportation networks in their growing communities.
Exciting plans for the Bay Colony Rail Trail southwest of Boston, Mass., took a big step toward fruition this month with the Needham Board of Selectmen unanimously supporting funding a study necessary to move the rail-trail project forward.
The Worcester Telegram & Gazette reported last week that local officials have been able to save tens of thousands of dollars in the construction of trail bridges crossing the Quinebaug River by doing the design and engineering work themselves, and reusing existing girders at the build sites.
The U.S. Congress last week was handed the statistical analysis of the first three years of the groundbreaking Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program (NTPP), which dedicated $25 million to each of four communities across the country to accurately demonstrate whether such investments equate to significantly higher levels of walking and bicycling, and a reduction in vehicle miles traveled.
"There is a perception that (trails) are nice amenities from a recreational standpoint, but with $4-a-gallon gas I have seen a lot of people out there biking and making an economic choice," Shailen Bhatt, secretary of the Delaware Department of Transportation, told Delaware Online this week.
Word just came in from the Department of Transportation that the U.S. Congress will later today receive the much-anticipated report detailing the measureable impacts of the Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program (NTPP).
As the U.S. Congress debates the next federal transportation bill, we're always excited to see the evidence keep mounting in support of the value of trails, walking and bicycling in communities of every size.