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As members and supporters of the Bicycle Coalition know, the Circuit Trails is an incredible regional asset for the Greater Philadelphia-South Jersey region. Our diverse and growing network of multi-purpose off-road trails is a place for our community to connect, gather, commute, recreate and discover new destinations across our region. With more than 330 miles of completed trails to date, our network is still growing toward its ultimate goal of 800-plus miles across our nine-county region.

There’s a lot of potential to make significant progress to increase the number of completed miles. There are about 77 miles of trails that likely to be built over the next five years. Additionally, there are another 95 miles of trails that have been “studied” but need a lot more work in order to get to a groundbreaking or ribbon cutting.

As we work toward a completed network, we know that the Circuit Trails needs to reach an interim goal of 500 completed miles of trails by 2025. And to get to that goal, we’ve developed an action plan to move the Circuit Trails forward.

Why such an ambitious goal? The Circuit Trails will make our region stronger by providing a place for healthy transportation and recreation, connecting our communities to green space, and making our neighborhoods more attractive places to live and work. Once connected, the Circuit Trails will be one of the nation’s premier urban trail networks and it will provide multiple benefits to neighborhoods, communities and the region as a whole.

The Circuit Trails Coalition, of which the Bicycle Coalition is a key member and leader, recently published a report that identifies the 170 miles of trail segment projects and policy recommendations that would enable the region to achieve our 500 miles by 2025 goal and will be advocating for adoption of those recommendations by county and local governments.

We want to work hard to advocate for policy changes and build public support for those trail segments that will enable the region to meet the 500 mile goal. We can advance the development of the Circuit Trails network with the help of trail users like you! Will you join us and use your voice to make an impact? 

Here’s how to join the campaign:

Step #1. Sign on to become a Circuit Citizen, a new interconnected, multi-county network of advocates for the Circuit Trails! We will alert you when there is an opportunity to become more involved in a trail segment in your community.

Step #2. Show your support by using and engaging with the Circuit Trails by finding a trail.

Step #3. Participate in a Circuit Trails event near you.

 

Sarah Clark Stuart

Author

Sarah’s foray into trail and bicycle advocacy began in 2004 when she became involved in the “Free Schuylkill River Park” campaign to preserve public access to the Schuylkill River Trail in Center City, now known as Schuylkill Banks. Since joining the Bicycle Coalition in 2006, she has been a key player in the Bicycle Coalition’s key accomplishments: the $23 million TIGER trail-building grant; naming and building out the Circuit; lobbying successfully for legislation mandating the inclusion of bike parking in new construction projects; Philadelphia’s Complete Streets policy; and coordinating research and analysis of several reports on bicycling in Philadelphia.

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