'Shovel ready' D&L Trail project to be dedicated Friday
The public is invited to attend a ribbon-cutting celebration at the East Penn Trailhead of the D&L Trail.
The event will take place at 11 a.m. on Friday Oct. 14 and marks the official opening of a 2.9 mile section of D&L Trail.
It connects the previously completed segment of trail at the Lehigh/Carbon County Line, to the Trailhead at the East Penn boat launch.
In the spring of 2010, a nearly three-mile undeveloped segment of the D&L Trail between East Penn Township and Lehigh Gap was surveyed, planned for, approved and ready to go.
When the call came for such "shovel ready" projects, the Delaware & Lehigh National Heritage Corridor was ready.
Sen. Dave Argall and Mike Rebert, PennDOT District 5-0 manager, will be on hand to mark completion of this expedited project.
Refreshments and a bike ride will follow the festivities.
Judy Borger, Carbon County Planning director, worked with D&L Trail manager Scott Everett, to pursue this project through the NEPA Alliance regional transportation planning committee.
As a result, the trail project was completed in less than one year, a fraction of the time typical federally-funded trail projects take.
Funding for the $475,000 project came from Federal Highway Administration funds administered through PennDOT District 5-0 in Allentown.
Work consisted of extensive re-establishment of swales, cleaning and adding drainage pipes, native grass planting adjacent to the trail and installation of a crushed limestone trail surface.
When combined with approximately 15 miles of recently opened trail in Lehigh County, bicyclists, hikers, walkers and runners now have 15 miles of trail that parallels the Lehigh River through a scenic portion of southern Carbon County and Lehigh County that includes waterfalls, ponds, high cliffs and forests.
The D&L Marathon/Half Marathon will use the new trail as part of its 26.2-mile course on Oct. 23.
The Delaware & Lehigh National and State Heritage Corridor fosters stewardship of historical, cultural and natural resources along the early canal and railroad systems that carried anthracite coal from mine to market in eastern Pennsylvania.