MASCOMA RIVER GREENWAY: UPDATE
What an incredible experience it has been working to create the Mascoma River Greenway, a railtrail connecting downtown Lebanon and the Northern Railtrail to West Lebanon. We have come a long way, and, while there is still some distance to go, you supporters should know the latest MRG news.
The construction work was put out to bid this spring and the city has accepted the bid from Willey Earthmoving LLC, a local, Windsor, VT, company. The work should begin in a few weeks and continue until completed. We are pleased to be doing business locally and the bid came in less than expected.
As Willey prepares for constructing, the railroad has been removing the rails from the corridor. They are currently being stacked beside the trail for later pick-up. As the rails go away, the city will be removing the ties so the rail bed is cleared for Willey to move in with their equipment.
When this section is completed it will be paved from the High St. intersection moving west to behind the Miracle Mile, under the Dudley Bridge, and connecting to Glen Road.
This is an exciting next step! Thank you to all our local supporters – contributors, volunteers, and, simply, friends.
As mention above, there is still more to do. There is still the issue of connecting the Northern Railtrail to the MRG. Over the next months the city will be working to provide the best opportunity for that connection to happen. While I, personally, would like to see the tunnel preserved and used, there is an alternative using a trail bridge which would go under the Rte 120 bridge and into the pocket park. A neat concept, too.
There is also connecting the skate park in West Lebanon with the Power House Mall. A path already exists, but can be improved to make it bike/ped friendly. There will be some volunteer work on that section.
There is also volunteer maintenance we can accomplish now. The pocket park by the tunnel and the Mascoma River needs to be trimmed as well as the MRG bridge over the Mascoma at the same site.
After working on the park we can weed-whack some of the trail west of High Street intersection. I’m looking at Wednesday and Thursday, this week and next to get that done. That would be June 21 and 22 and June 28 and 29 beginning at 4pm. If you can come to help, let me know at Go2teach@comcast.net. If you can, bring what tools are needed — weed-whacker, loppers, gloves, other ideas. Hope some of you can make it. We will have some tools there.
Frank Gould, Co-chair Mascoma River Greenway Coalition