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DelDOT and DNREC Sign Agreement to Move Forward with Governor’s “First State Trails and Pathways Plan”

Former Governor Jack Markell (2009-2017) | Office of the Governor | Date Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011



(LEWES)Today, Secretary of the Delaware Department of Transportation Shailen Bhatt and Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Secretary Collin O’Mara released a list of proposed statewide trails and pathways and signed a Memorandum of Agreement to develop and execute the Governor’s vision, “First State Trails and Pathways Plan.” Yesterday, the Governor announced his ideas for a proposed network of trails and pathways to expand non-motorized travel and recreational opportunities in Delaware.

Before biking advocates, elected officials and community leaders at the Delaware Bike Summit at the University of Delaware’s Virden Center in Lewes, the Cabinet Secretaries detailed a full list of nineteen (19) possible projects for public consideration in each of Delaware’s three counties.

Map of New Castle Co. Proposed Trails (PDF)New Castle County Proposed Projects

  • Northern Delaware Greenway Trail – Upgrade trail surfaces in Alapocas Run State Park; complete gaps along Talley Road and from Brandywine Zoo to N. Market Street.
  • Newark to Wilmington Pathway – Proposed to link the two cities.
  • White Clay Creek State Park – Upgrade trail surfaces; complete link along Hopkins Bridge Road between the Pomeroy Trail and Creek Road Trail; and begin design/engineering of the Tri-Valley Trail that will link ultimately link the City Newark to Paper Mill County Park through White Clay Creek State Park.
  • Auburn Heights Preserve – Complete shared use trails within the newly developing State Preserve to Hockessin.
  • New Castle Industrial Track Trail – Complete the final trail segment with a bike/pedestrian bridge over the Christina River to the walkway at the Wilmington Riverfront.
  • East Coast Greenway Trail – Frenchtown Road, US 13 to Ferry Cutoff, New Castle. Construct a patch on north side of Route 273, between Route 13 and Ferry Cutoff and additional segments.
  • Lums Pond State Park – Upgrade and enhance existing trails; create a shared-use pathway along Buck Jersey Road (inside the park) from the Park entrance to Route 71.
  • Chesapeake and Delaware Canal Trail – Construct a 9 mile trail from Delaware City to Lums Pond State Park.

 

Map of Kent Co. Proposed Trails (PDF)Kent County Proposed Projects

  • Dover to Clayton Rail Pathway – Connect the existing Scarborough Road shared-use pathway at Delaware Technical and Community College  in Dover with the town of Clayton along an existing rail right-of-way.
  • Capital Bikeway – Extend the existing 0.7 mile bicycle/pedestrian pathway through Dover to the St. Jones River Trail. This project extends the existing 1.5 mile pathway that lies between Schutte Park and West Street.
  • Isaac Branch Trail – Make improvements such as a installing a pedestrian bridge, widen sidewalks and upgrade traffic signals.
  • St. Jones River Trail – Extend and complete connections. This work will be in partnership with Dover Air Force Base.
  • Killens Pond State Park – Complete a trail gap along Killens Pond Road, linking the northern and southern Park sections.

Sussex County Proposed Projects

  • Georgetown to Lewes to Cape Henlopen State Park – Construct a regional rail-to-trail project with an initial trail segment in Lewes.
  • Junction and Breakwater Trail – Extend trail from Gills Neck Road toward Lewes and make trail upgrades along Gills Neck Road to Route 9.
  • Map of Sussex Co. Proposed Trails (PDF)Cape Henlopen State Park – Extend the Gordons Pond Trail from the observation platform north to Herring Point.  This will link the northern and southern portions of Park.
  • Assawoman Canal Trail – Design and construct approximately 1 mile of recreational trail along the Assawoman Canal in partnership with the towns of Ocean View, Bethany Beach and South Bethany Beach.
  • Fred Hudson Road –Create a link between area business and fresh pond area of Delaware Seashore State Park
  • Trap Pond State Parks – Complete the Loblolly Trail along Wootten Road filling a trail gap.

See maps of proposed trails and pathways in New Castle County, Kent County, Sussex County.

During his speech at the Bike Summit, DelDOT Secretary Shailen Bhatt  added more specifics to the Governor’s announcement on Thursday and asked for input and participation from cycling advocates and other community leaders as the plan develops further.  Urging the state’s bicycling community to partner with his agency as well as DNREC in the effort, Bhatt said, “Starting today, let’s all get to work on the goal that Governor Markell has outlined. Let us agree that our legacy will be to make Delaware the most bike-friendly state in the country.”

Also during the Summit, DNREC Secretary Collin O’Mara said, “Under Governor Markell’s leadership, Delaware has the potential to create a world class network of interconnected trails. By making strategic investments and adopting innovative public policies, we will connect our communities and make them truly bikeable and walkable.”

Bike Delaware Executive Director James Wilson noted that Governor Markell’s vision is also shared by Delaware’s legislators in both parties. “In May, the General Assembly unanimously declared that walking and bicycling are both cost-effective and healthy transportation options,” Wilson said. “Making those activities safer and more convenient will help families save money, improve public health, increase tourism, give a boost to economic development, reduce congestion, lower emissions, provide recreational opportunities and improve quality of life for Delawareans. What other transportation projects in Delaware have such an enormous and multifaceted return on public investment?”

Mark Chura, Executive Director of Delaware Greenways, noted that “today’s announcement by Governor Markell not only ties together and strengthens longstanding efforts to build a first class bicycle and pedestrian network throughout Delaware, but takes it to a whole new level.  Interconnecting our towns with their outlying suburbs and close to home recreational areas benefits us all and is a great investment in Delaware’s future.”  Chura went on to say, “We have some amazing places here in Delaware that, to most of us, are only accessible by car or not at all. The Governor’s initiative will change all that, while at the same time providing new options get out of doors and improve our health.”

The MOA signed today outlines the parameters by which the trails and pathways will be considered, including the creation of an inter-departmental team to develop and recommend a set of activities for Fiscal Year 2012 and the subsequent four fiscal years.   DelDOT and DNREC will consult with the Bicycle Council, the Pedestrian Advisory Committee and the Council on Greenways and Trails with regard to the prioritization and propose a  list of projects to the Governor for consideration for funding.  Public workshops will be held with property owners, community groups and other affected stakeholders to seek input into the placement, cost and maintenance of the trail systems.   The proposed projects are supported by a $7 million appropriation from the FY 2012 Bond Bill , funding that will maximize the state’s ability to leverage federal and private dollars over time.

The Governor’s long term vision for bicycling, trails and pathways in Delaware includes:

  • Build a world class interconnected pathway network
  • Support creation of local jobs
  • Link communities internally to support local sustainable economies, and externally to grow connections between neighborhoods, towns and cities
  • Develop sustainable practices in the creation of the network, such as supporting native landscaping and natural habitats
  • Support health communities by providing affordable, active transportation choices
  • Re-establish Delaware in the Top Ten of Bicycle Friendly states  (we’re at #17 right now)
  • And, develop strategies for the ongoing maintenance and upgrades of existing facilities

“My goal is to make Delaware walkable and bikeable, so more of us can enjoy the great Delaware outdoors,” said Governor Markell.  “We can create a network of bicycle and pedestrian trails by building on existing pathways and trails.  We create jobs and connect communities across the state and at the same time, expand recreational and transportation opportunities for Delawareans and visitors.”

For more details on the proposed trails, and for links to video of Sec. Bhatt’s speech, please visit www.deldot.gov

Visit www.destateparks.com/FirstStateTrails for a copy of the proposed “First State in Trails”  priority project list.

###

The Delaware Bike Summit is an annual event designed to bring together bicycling advocates, community leaders and elected officials to hear from national speakers and to create strategies on how to make Delaware more bicycle friendly. Today’s event, held at the Virden Center in Lewes is the third summit. The event is organized by the Delaware Bicycle Council, and a committee made up of members from Wilmington Area Planning Council DelDOT, Bike Delaware, Dover/Kent Metropolitan Planning Organization, White Clay Bicycle Club and Sussex Cyclists.

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DelDOT and DNREC Sign Agreement to Move Forward with Governor’s “First State Trails and Pathways Plan”

Former Governor Jack Markell (2009-2017) | Office of the Governor | Date Posted: Friday, October 14, 2011



(LEWES)Today, Secretary of the Delaware Department of Transportation Shailen Bhatt and Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control Secretary Collin O’Mara released a list of proposed statewide trails and pathways and signed a Memorandum of Agreement to develop and execute the Governor’s vision, “First State Trails and Pathways Plan.” Yesterday, the Governor announced his ideas for a proposed network of trails and pathways to expand non-motorized travel and recreational opportunities in Delaware.

Before biking advocates, elected officials and community leaders at the Delaware Bike Summit at the University of Delaware’s Virden Center in Lewes, the Cabinet Secretaries detailed a full list of nineteen (19) possible projects for public consideration in each of Delaware’s three counties.

Map of New Castle Co. Proposed Trails (PDF)New Castle County Proposed Projects

  • Northern Delaware Greenway Trail – Upgrade trail surfaces in Alapocas Run State Park; complete gaps along Talley Road and from Brandywine Zoo to N. Market Street.
  • Newark to Wilmington Pathway – Proposed to link the two cities.
  • White Clay Creek State Park – Upgrade trail surfaces; complete link along Hopkins Bridge Road between the Pomeroy Trail and Creek Road Trail; and begin design/engineering of the Tri-Valley Trail that will link ultimately link the City Newark to Paper Mill County Park through White Clay Creek State Park.
  • Auburn Heights Preserve – Complete shared use trails within the newly developing State Preserve to Hockessin.
  • New Castle Industrial Track Trail – Complete the final trail segment with a bike/pedestrian bridge over the Christina River to the walkway at the Wilmington Riverfront.
  • East Coast Greenway Trail – Frenchtown Road, US 13 to Ferry Cutoff, New Castle. Construct a patch on north side of Route 273, between Route 13 and Ferry Cutoff and additional segments.
  • Lums Pond State Park – Upgrade and enhance existing trails; create a shared-use pathway along Buck Jersey Road (inside the park) from the Park entrance to Route 71.
  • Chesapeake and Delaware Canal Trail – Construct a 9 mile trail from Delaware City to Lums Pond State Park.

 

Map of Kent Co. Proposed Trails (PDF)Kent County Proposed Projects

  • Dover to Clayton Rail Pathway – Connect the existing Scarborough Road shared-use pathway at Delaware Technical and Community College  in Dover with the town of Clayton along an existing rail right-of-way.
  • Capital Bikeway – Extend the existing 0.7 mile bicycle/pedestrian pathway through Dover to the St. Jones River Trail. This project extends the existing 1.5 mile pathway that lies between Schutte Park and West Street.
  • Isaac Branch Trail – Make improvements such as a installing a pedestrian bridge, widen sidewalks and upgrade traffic signals.
  • St. Jones River Trail – Extend and complete connections. This work will be in partnership with Dover Air Force Base.
  • Killens Pond State Park – Complete a trail gap along Killens Pond Road, linking the northern and southern Park sections.

Sussex County Proposed Projects

  • Georgetown to Lewes to Cape Henlopen State Park – Construct a regional rail-to-trail project with an initial trail segment in Lewes.
  • Junction and Breakwater Trail – Extend trail from Gills Neck Road toward Lewes and make trail upgrades along Gills Neck Road to Route 9.
  • Map of Sussex Co. Proposed Trails (PDF)Cape Henlopen State Park – Extend the Gordons Pond Trail from the observation platform north to Herring Point.  This will link the northern and southern portions of Park.
  • Assawoman Canal Trail – Design and construct approximately 1 mile of recreational trail along the Assawoman Canal in partnership with the towns of Ocean View, Bethany Beach and South Bethany Beach.
  • Fred Hudson Road –Create a link between area business and fresh pond area of Delaware Seashore State Park
  • Trap Pond State Parks – Complete the Loblolly Trail along Wootten Road filling a trail gap.

See maps of proposed trails and pathways in New Castle County, Kent County, Sussex County.

During his speech at the Bike Summit, DelDOT Secretary Shailen Bhatt  added more specifics to the Governor’s announcement on Thursday and asked for input and participation from cycling advocates and other community leaders as the plan develops further.  Urging the state’s bicycling community to partner with his agency as well as DNREC in the effort, Bhatt said, “Starting today, let’s all get to work on the goal that Governor Markell has outlined. Let us agree that our legacy will be to make Delaware the most bike-friendly state in the country.”

Also during the Summit, DNREC Secretary Collin O’Mara said, “Under Governor Markell’s leadership, Delaware has the potential to create a world class network of interconnected trails. By making strategic investments and adopting innovative public policies, we will connect our communities and make them truly bikeable and walkable.”

Bike Delaware Executive Director James Wilson noted that Governor Markell’s vision is also shared by Delaware’s legislators in both parties. “In May, the General Assembly unanimously declared that walking and bicycling are both cost-effective and healthy transportation options,” Wilson said. “Making those activities safer and more convenient will help families save money, improve public health, increase tourism, give a boost to economic development, reduce congestion, lower emissions, provide recreational opportunities and improve quality of life for Delawareans. What other transportation projects in Delaware have such an enormous and multifaceted return on public investment?”

Mark Chura, Executive Director of Delaware Greenways, noted that “today’s announcement by Governor Markell not only ties together and strengthens longstanding efforts to build a first class bicycle and pedestrian network throughout Delaware, but takes it to a whole new level.  Interconnecting our towns with their outlying suburbs and close to home recreational areas benefits us all and is a great investment in Delaware’s future.”  Chura went on to say, “We have some amazing places here in Delaware that, to most of us, are only accessible by car or not at all. The Governor’s initiative will change all that, while at the same time providing new options get out of doors and improve our health.”

The MOA signed today outlines the parameters by which the trails and pathways will be considered, including the creation of an inter-departmental team to develop and recommend a set of activities for Fiscal Year 2012 and the subsequent four fiscal years.   DelDOT and DNREC will consult with the Bicycle Council, the Pedestrian Advisory Committee and the Council on Greenways and Trails with regard to the prioritization and propose a  list of projects to the Governor for consideration for funding.  Public workshops will be held with property owners, community groups and other affected stakeholders to seek input into the placement, cost and maintenance of the trail systems.   The proposed projects are supported by a $7 million appropriation from the FY 2012 Bond Bill , funding that will maximize the state’s ability to leverage federal and private dollars over time.

The Governor’s long term vision for bicycling, trails and pathways in Delaware includes:

  • Build a world class interconnected pathway network
  • Support creation of local jobs
  • Link communities internally to support local sustainable economies, and externally to grow connections between neighborhoods, towns and cities
  • Develop sustainable practices in the creation of the network, such as supporting native landscaping and natural habitats
  • Support health communities by providing affordable, active transportation choices
  • Re-establish Delaware in the Top Ten of Bicycle Friendly states  (we’re at #17 right now)
  • And, develop strategies for the ongoing maintenance and upgrades of existing facilities

“My goal is to make Delaware walkable and bikeable, so more of us can enjoy the great Delaware outdoors,” said Governor Markell.  “We can create a network of bicycle and pedestrian trails by building on existing pathways and trails.  We create jobs and connect communities across the state and at the same time, expand recreational and transportation opportunities for Delawareans and visitors.”

For more details on the proposed trails, and for links to video of Sec. Bhatt’s speech, please visit www.deldot.gov

Visit www.destateparks.com/FirstStateTrails for a copy of the proposed “First State in Trails”  priority project list.

###

The Delaware Bike Summit is an annual event designed to bring together bicycling advocates, community leaders and elected officials to hear from national speakers and to create strategies on how to make Delaware more bicycle friendly. Today’s event, held at the Virden Center in Lewes is the third summit. The event is organized by the Delaware Bicycle Council, and a committee made up of members from Wilmington Area Planning Council DelDOT, Bike Delaware, Dover/Kent Metropolitan Planning Organization, White Clay Bicycle Club and Sussex Cyclists.

image_printPrint

Related Topics:  , , , , , , , ,


Graphic that represents delaware news on a mobile phone

Keep up to date by receiving a daily digest email, around noon, of current news release posts from state agencies on news.delaware.gov.

Here you can subscribe to future news updates.