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Old 10-25-02, 10:33 AM   #1
Fireman Phil
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Bike trail help????


I have been asked to serve on a citizen commitee concerning construction of a bike trail which is part of a rail to trail program.

I have read so much negative stuff from fourm members who already have trails. What are some concerns that I should have or what would you guys do if you had it to do over again. Since we will be up against bean counters who havent ridden a bike since they were 10 years old.

Your suggestions, Please

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Old 10-25-02, 10:57 AM   #2
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There are a lot of positive things about trails too, it's just human nature to point out the bad while assuming the good is common knowledge. I've ridden rail to trails around the great state of Michigan and have, under the right circumstances, found them to serve a very useful purpose.

For instance, US Hwy. 10 is nothing but a high speed strip of ashphalt through nowhere that has very minimal shoulders and a surface in such poor condition that it will jar the fillings out of your teeth if you're riding on high pressure tires.....but..... there is a rail trail that runs parallel to it for about 80 miles that just may save your life or at least your teeth.

That said, I suggest you follow the RTT conservancy guidelines to take advantage of a proven success plan for this type of endeavour, it will help you avoid misguided energy being wasted.
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Old 10-25-02, 11:57 AM   #3
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Originally posted by threadend
That said, I suggest you follow the RTT conservancy guidelines to take advantage of a proven success plan for this type of endeavour, it will help you avoid misguided energy being wasted.

On the RTT site you can find information about Missouri's KATY Trail. It stretches across the entire state and is a valuable cycling resource. People ride it for family day trips in addition to multi-day tours.

Some links for the KATY Trail:

Interactive KATY Trail

Katy Trail State Park
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Old 10-25-02, 12:37 PM   #4
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I don't think its a question of design (other than width),
or actual mistakes that we generally whinge about.
Its more the multi use aspect. Bikes, skaters, walkers
and horses don't mix really well on the same 10ft wide
That said, look at the Northern Virginia rails to trails project.
you might also contact LAW (league of American Wheelmen)
about trails etc.
Good luck,

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Old 10-25-02, 12:47 PM   #5
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I think the negative things you've heard about trails were in town paved multi-use trails with much pedestrian, roller blade, bike, horse, ... traffic. If you are talking about a longer distance and not paved I think things get better.
The RTTC suggestions are right on!

The other thing to consider is does it hurt any thing or is some one pushing it for some personal profit kind of reason. Both happened here. Sone one thought if he pushed a trail he could shut down a shooting range and a rural church with a cemetary and open up land for development.

Of the RTTC trails I've ridden I really liked. I would have liked it if the one here went through if it had been done right. I have to admit that anything that helps a developer I think is bad.

Just some thoughts.

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Old 10-26-02, 02:45 PM   #6
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In Maryland we have the NCR trail that crosses into pennysylvania and becomes the york Heritage Trail.

They did and excellent job with the rail to trail thing might want to look it up.
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