November 2012

In This Issue...

Greetings from the Director

  • Giving Thanks for Every ECG Segment & Partner

National News

  • Celebrating the Life of Sally Jacobs
  • ECG National Meetings a Huge Success
  • Help us Kick Off 2013 Right


  • A Record 22 New Trail Designations

ECG In the News

  • Great Newspaper Articles and More

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Greetings from ECGA Executive Director, Dennis Markatos-Soriano

Giving Thanks for Every ECG Segment & Partner

Dear East Coast Greenway teammates,

While eating enough to fuel several long-distance bike rides and walks last week, I felt thankful for one of the most memorable national fall meetings ever. As you can read about below, we officially designated a record 22 new segments of greenway into our system. That means twenty-two sets of inspections, applications, local endorsements, and photos were received and approved by our trail council in the last six months. I'm very grateful for our continued trail progress and the hard work of so many for so long who make it possible.

We not only got a lot done, but we also had the pleasure of exploring one of our most beautiful urban routes. Far too many times, I've driven past Richmond on I-95 without exploring the City and its amazing James River. I won't be making that mistake too often in the future, and I also encourage you to venture down to the hanging bridge over the River to Belle Isle, the lovely murals, and sites like Main Street Station where we held a great reception. It was another reminder that the bicycle and our own two feet are the best way to get to know the beautiful communities throughout the Eastern Seaboard.

Lastly, I feel thankful for our strong partnerships from the local to the national level. We couldn't have had such a productive and enjoyable weekend without the City of Richmond, the Virginia Bicycling Federation, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, and many other key partners who helped in so many ways. And I'm thankful to partners like you, who've been giving generously during this Annual Appeal season. (If you haven't had a chance to contribute yet, you can do so here.)

Together, we are building a sustainable & healthy America,

Dennis Markatos-Soriano

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National ECGA News
Celebrating the Life on an ECG Hero, Sally Jacobs

Sally Jacobs' bright smile and strong determination ensured the completion of the ECG’s longest segment: the 85-mile Down East Sunrise Trail (DEST) effort in Maine. Luckily for the East Coast Greenway, she took an interest in creating the DEST after making a big difference in the bikability of her home community of Orono in the 1970s and 1980s.

Sally passed away November 12, leaving behind a legacy of leadership in trails and outdoor recreation. May we all be guided by her inspiration, strength, and spirit as we carry her torch for safe, sustainable enjoyment of the abundant nature all around us.

Read more about Sally's life and contributions.

Sally Jacobs

Sally cutting the ribbon at the DEST opening in 2010.

ECG Fall National Meetings a Huge Success

We held our national Trail Council and Annual Meetings in Richmond, Virginia, on November 17th. It was a lovely weekend, filled with inspiration and reminders of why trails and the ECG really can make an impact on a community.

The weekend started with a walking tour of the ECG in downtown Richmond, led by Richmond City Planner Tyler Potterfield. The 1.5 hour tour explored the canal trail and historic sites along the James River, before ending at Richmond's beautiful and historic Main Street Station for a reception put on with several local partner organizations including Virginia Bicycling Federation, the City of Richmond, Richmond 2015, and the Virginia Capital Trail Foundation.

Keith Laughlin, President of Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, spoke briefly at the reception, and at our Trail Council meeting on Saturday morning.

RTC and ECG at Richmond reception

Dennis Markatos-Soriano gives Keith Laughlin and Charlie Marshall an ECG tile.

The Trail Council and Annual Members Meeting were held at the Virginia War Memorial, which maintains a museum of military artifacts and a moving memorial wall with the names of Virginia's fallen soldiers. Our close proximity from the meeting location to the East Coast Greenway was a great reminder that many important historic sites are accessible off the ECG.

During the meetings, ECG staff gave updates on progress in each region, and a record 22 new trail segments were officially designated as part of the ECG! (Read more about each trail below.) Representative of several partner organizations spoke to the group, including Champe Burnley of the Virginia Bicycling Federation, Charles Price and Richmond City Councilwoman Ellen Robertson of the Cannon Creek Greenway, and Nathan Burrell of the City of Richmond.

During the Annual Members Meeting, three new Trustees were elected to our board: Jacob Dolan of NC, Gail Kirkland of GA, and Stephen Rees of ME and FL. We also re-elected three board members whose terms are complete at the end of 2012, and approved three amendments to the Bylaws. Members then had the opportunity to ask questions and make comments.

During the lunch break, ECGA staff and members and City of Richmond personnel performed a ceremonial sign installation near the entrance to the Belle Island Bridge to celebrate the recent passage of a Richmond City Council resolution calling for installation of ECG signs to mark the route across the City. (This was a ceremonial sign placing only, as the City needs to approve the locations of the permanent signs. Look for the real signs coming soon!)

Huge thanks to our partners in Virginia -- especially the Virginia Bicycling Federation, which serves as the ECG VA committee -- for helping us put on the meetings, and for all they do to further the ECG in Virginia!

Special thanks also go to Virginia Commonwealth University for hosting the November 18 meeting of our Board of Trustees in their awesome bike lounge on VCU's campus!

sign installation

Ceremonial Sign Installation under the Belle Isle bridge in Richmond, VA with (clockwise from left): Nathan Burrell (Trails Manager, Richmond Parks & Recreation), David Read (ECGA Board Chair), the ECGA's Eric Weis and Herb Hiller, and Jakob Helmboldt (Pedestrian, Bicycle & Trails Coordinator, City of Richmond) and his daughter.


Thank you to all our partners for the weekend, and to Cabot Creamery for their generous donation of yummy cheese for our meeting!

Help Us Build on Our Greenway Progress in 2013!

This year we designated more than 50 miles of new greenway, posted ECG signs on a record number of miles, and engaged more people than ever on greenway rides and walks from Florida to Maine - thanks to you!

We have come a long way as a small organization, but we have much more to do to help make communities along the Eastern Seaboard safe, accessible, sustainable, and economically-viable. Our country can’t afford NOT to complete the East Coast Greenway.

In 2013 we aim to sign another 300 miles of our route and designate 50 miles of new greenway. Perhaps our most exciting goal for the year ahead is to complete the first East Coast Greenway app for mobile devices.

You can be part of these major steps forward by donating at least $10! Please donate today! A generous donor will match your tax-deductible contributions made by December 31 up to $25,000!

Thank you for your support!


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ECG Spotlight - New Trail Designations
ECG Expands with 22 New Trail Designations

At our Trail Council meeting in mid-November, we designated 22 new trails as part of the ECG - topping our Spring meeting record of 20! These 22 new segments added 35 miles of trail on our spine route, which now includes over 800 miles of completed greenway!

The new trail segments run the gamut of the East Coast Greenway experience - beautiful rural trails, interesting urban connections, and a waterway ferry crossing. We are so pleased that we have new designations from each region of the ECG - see locations below. Way to go, team!

designations fall 2012

Miami Beach Atlantic GW

Miami Beach: Atlantic Greenway, Miami Beach, FL, 4.5 miles

The lovely Atlantic Greenway offers spectacular views of the ocean and the Miami Beach skyline, with its famed art deco architecture.

Boca Raton AIA Sidepath

Boca Raton A1A Sidepath, Boca Raton, FL, 3.1 miles

This sidepath provides a separated path for cycling and walking adjacent to congested A1A in an important city along our route.

Jupiter Riverwalk

Jupiter Riverwalk (new phase), Jupiter, FL, 0.6 miles

This new phase of the 2.1 mile existing trail follows the meandering course of Florida's scenic intracoastal waterway. Jupiter's Riverwalk connects hotels, marinas, restaurants, and natural areas, and we think is the best place in Jupiter to catch the sunset! When complete, the Riverwalk will extend for 3.5 miles.

Seabranch Greenway

Seabranch Greenway, Martin County, FL, 0.83 miles

This greenway section runs alongside scenic state park lands, on a separated trail adjacent to Highway A1A.

Timucan Trail

Timucuan Trail, Duval County, FL, 2.6 miles

The beautiful Timucuan Trail runs through pristine woodlands on big Talbot Island State Park. The trail provides a cycling and walking option separated from A1A.

Marshes of Glynn

Marshes of Glynn Trail, Brunswick, GA, 0.3 miles

The Marshes of Glynn Trail connects over 63 acres of parkland in two of Brunswick's most significant city parks: Howard Coffin Park and Marshes of Glen Overlook. The Overlook links to Torras Causeway, the artery that connects mainland Georgia to St. Simons Island.

Triplett Trail Park

Triplett Park Trail, Savannah, GA, 0.65 miles

The beautiful Triplett Park Trail links over 200 miles of parklands. An additional planned 0.9-mile trail will lead through the park to the historic Savannah-Ogeechee Canal corridor.

Harrelson Blvd

Harrelson Blvd. Trail (new phase), Myrtle Beach, SC, 1.6 miles

The Harrelson Blvd. Trail connects Myrtle Beach's beachside neighborhoods to the airport and beyond. This trail provides separated bicycle and pedestrian access along busy Harrelson Blvd. The path was constructed as part of a recent roadway project.

Southport to Ft. Fisher

Southport to Fort Fisher Ferry, south of Wilmington, NC, 4 miles

The Southport to Fort Fisher Ferry crosses the Cape Fear River near its mouth. Year round ferry service is run by the State of NC and operates on an established schedule. One way ferry tickets are $2 for bicycles and $1 for pedestrians.

Neuse River Trail

Neuse River Trail (Clayton section), Clayton, NC, 4 miles

The scenic Neuse River Trail is an early phase of what will be over 30 miles of continuous greenway along the Neuse River, to be completed in 2014.

Rocky Branch Trail

Rocky Branch Trail, Raleigh, NC, 1.2 miles

The beautiful Rocky Branch trail runs through the NC State University campus in Raleigh, NC. It is a public path that runs entirely across Central campus from Gorman Street on the west to Raleigh's historic Pullen Park on the east. Connections to other sections of the Raleigh Greenway system can be made at both ends.


Umstead State Park Trail, Wake County, NC, 5.3 miles

This beautiful trail runs through an expansive wooded state park near RDU Airport, in the middle of the urban Triangle area. The trail surface is hard-packed crushed gravel.

Belle Isle Trail

Belle Isle Trail, Richmond, VA, 1.4 mile

Belle Isle, situated in the James River, holds several historic sites and is now one of the city's most significant recreation areas, with trails, swimming, and kayak rentals. A bicycle skills course is also planned for the island. The Belle Isle Trail connects to the Belle Isle bridge which was designated as part of the ECG last spring.

Cannon Creek Greenway

Cannon Creek Greenway, Richmond, VA, 0.6 miles

This important greenway is the first multi-use trail in the historically under-served Highland Park neighborhood of Richmond. An additional section of trail is planned, and a longer term vision is to connect the southern end of the trail to the James River.

Ashland Railside Park

Ashland Railside Park Trail, Ashland, VA, 0.35 miles

The Ashland Railside Park Trail is part of proposed 3.65 mile trail which will allow for future connections to the Ashland Trolley Line Trail and the City of Richmond to the South. This first completed section runs through Railside Park.

2nd St. Sidepath

2nd Street Sidepath (Metropolitan Branch Trail), Washington, DC, 0.4 miles

The 2nd Street Sidepath is part of the Metropolitan Branch Trail that runs through DC along the railroad corridor. This section connects to the US Capital, Union Station, and to regional trails heading to Maryland.

CSX Bridge

Schuylkill Trail: Bridge Over CSX Tracks, Philadelphia, PA, 0.15 miles

This significant trail bridge takes cyclists and pedestrians over CSX freight tracks on one of heaviest used sections of trail in Philadelphia. It greatly improves safety and access for trail users, over the previous at-grade railroad crossing. This project was funded by a Federal Tiger I grant.

Pennypack Creek Trail

Pennypack Creek Trail, Philadelphia, PA, 0.5 miles

The half mile Pennypack Creek Trail connects the current interim route through Philadelphia from State Road to Torrasdale Avenue. This segment is part of a longer existing trail that connects to Montgomery County, PA.

Bartram's Garden Trail

Bartram's Garden, Philadelphia, PA, 0.3 miles

This beautiful park along the Schuylkill River provides views of Philadelphia from Bartram's estate. Plans for more trail in this area are underway.

Silver Sands State Park

Silver Sands State Park, Milford, CT, 0.6 miles

This trail goes through the Silver Sands State Park, which features beautiful white sand beaches and a large pristine wetlands area. The park also has boardwalks which cross the wetlands and run along the beach (they are not part of the ECG, but take some time to enjoy them while in the park!).

Charter Oak GW

Charter Oak Greenway (new phase), Manchester, CT, 0.35 miles

This is the latest piece of the Charter Oak Greenway, which will be 10 miles when complete, and will connect to the Connecticut River across from Hartford. The remaining 2.7 miles of the greenway are all currently under development. The greenway is built largely in the I-384 corridor and connects many neighborhoods and the campus of Manchester Community College.

Peabody Independence GW

Peabody Independence Greenway, Peabody, MA, 1.7 miles

This is the first section of ECG on the larger Peabody Greenway. Additional ECG sections of the trail will eventually run on an additional 1.3 miles of unused rail line, and will connect to Salem, Massachusetts.

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ECG In the News

Montgomery Media: Friends of East Coast Greenway Lecture December 5th Richmond Trails Get National ECG Designation

Richmond Times Dispatch: Adding Central Virginia Trails to the ECG

Cutler Bay News: New Black Creek Trail Project Begins in Miami-Dade

Southington, CT Patch: Hike for Heroes Walks in Southington to Benefit Military Families

The Coastal Boca Raton Links Path to Greenway

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ECG News Online is a publication of the East Coast Greenway Alliance, a national not-for-profit membership organization dedicated to promoting the establishment, preservation, sound management, and safe use and enjoyment of the East Coast Greenway, a 3000-mile, continuous route linking seaboard cities and towns from Maine to Florida. It aims to be 100% traffic-free.

Support the Greenway by becoming a member of the ECGA or donating today.

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Learn more about the East Coast Greenway by visiting our website, or call us at (919) 797-0619.

Copyright 2012 East Coast Greenway Alliance