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Trails and the Community

Spring 2012 Update

Over the past several months, there has been a lot of activity related to the Bay Colony Rail Trail. It has been really exciting to see the project gain momentum, and to see all three towns actively engaged. This is an update on recent developments, including a couple of critical town votes on the rail trail.

BCRT to Co-Host Charles River Railroad Bike Tour

MassBike and the Bay Colony Rail Trail are hosting a tour on May 28th along the route of the old Charles River Railroad.  A portion of this route is the very corridor where the Bay Colony Rail Trail will be developed.

The Charles River Railroad was how they brought in all the gravel to fill the Back Bay.

The Railroad in Dover

By Marta Hunter

There is a charming little volume in the Dover Library titled Dover on the Charles – A Contribution to New England Folk Lore by Alice J.Dover Station Jones.  Published in 1906, it contains the reminiscences of a spinster school teacher and her bucolic youth in a Dover fifty years past.

Example of an Effective Letter to the Editor

Letter: Rail Trail fears unfounded

Wed Aug 01, 2007, 03:55 PM EDT

Georgetown - To the editor:

We just read the article, “Flier Prompts Rail Trail Concerns,” in the July 26 Georgetown Record.

We are direct abutters to the proposed Rail Trail and we received the flier slipped into our mailbox. 

My wife, and I too, have responded to the brochure’s call to contact the Board of Selectman. However, we have a very different reaction to the brochure and the reported negative responses you described in your article.

Unlike the brochure and those responding negatively to it, we strongly support the Rail Trail for the following reasons, reasons that correspond to the very same set of concerns that your article describes:

Study of Rail-Trails and safe communities: The experience of 372 trails

Converting an abandoned rail corridor to a trail tends to reduce crime by cleaning up the landscape and attracting people who use the trail for recreation and transportation.
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) conducted a survey of all rail-trail managers in an effort to document the level of crime on trails and identify the mitigation measures used by traildesigners and managers. The objectives of this study were threefold:

  1. to document the levels of crime on urban, suburban and rural rail-trails with current statistics and comprehensive data,

  2. to examine trail management strategies that can mitigate crime andimprove trail safety, and

  3. to put crime on trails in perspective. A summary of past studies,our methodology, results, recommendations and several case studies follow.


Connecticut Town Agrees To Remove Bike Trail Fence

Connecticut Town Agrees To Remove Bike Trail FenceBy STEPHANIE REITZ From the Hartford Courant AVON, Connecticut- The town council has agreed to remove 11,700 feet of chain-link fencing along the Rails-to-Trails path in town. Residents whose homes abut the path had requested the move. The fencing, which was installed years ago to ease the security and privacy concerns of some homeowners, is not needed after all and is unattractive, other neighbors told the town council recently. The paved path was created in the late 1990s along the old Boston & Maine Railroad route. It has become a place where residents go to chat, get exercise and enjoy their community, the nearby homeowners say. "After years of listening to the choo-choo train going through, it's a pleasure to watch the bikers and walkers go through there," said resident Susan Namerow, whose home abuts the trail. "It seems to be a really friendly situation, and I wouldn't like to see it changed." Namerow and other residents surveyed homeowners whose property abuts the trail and found that they overwhelmingly supported the removal of the fencing. Town council members responded enthusiastically.

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Haven Street Dover 1

Haven Street Dover 1

Dover Center looking North to Needham

Dover Center looking North to Needham

The BCRT Logo - thanks to all who completed the survey!

The BCRT Logo - thanks to all who completed the survey!


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