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A line of local electeds and nonprofit leaders churn some dirt with ceremonial shovels.

Throwing dirt! Circuit Trails Chair Sarah Clark Stuart joins Bucks and Montgomery County and Southampton officials to break ground on the Newtown Rail Trail on October 15, 2019

After years of waiting, on October 15th, Bucks County broke ground on the first section of the Newtown Rail Trail in Southhampton Township.

This 2.5-mile, 12-foot-wide multi-use trail will connect Tamanend Park in Upper Southampton Township to the popular Pennypack Rail Trail in Montgomery County.

Located on SEPTA’s former Newtown Branch, the trail will be part of The Circuit, an 800-mile bicycle circuit in the Delaware Valley. Construction is expected to be completed in 2020.

A cooperative effort between Bucks County, Montgomery County and Upper Southampton Township, the project will cost approximately $2.4 million. Design costs were funded by PennDOT’s Act 13 Marcellus Legacy Fund, Montgomery County and the Regional Trail Fund funded by the William Penn Foundation and operated by the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, and construction costs will be funded through PennDOT’s Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Program.

The event was attended by all three Bucks County Commissioners, Robert G. Loughery, Charles H. Martin and Diane M. Ellis-Marseglia and Montgomery County Commissioner Val Arkoosh.

 

Bicycle Coalition

Remnants of the old rail bed that will soon be converted into a multi-use path by the historic Southampton Train Station in Southampton, PA

Montgomery County is also expected to finish its last section of the Pennypack trail in 2020 which will connect to this segment, creating an uninterrupted trail from the border of Northampton Township all the way to the Delaware River.

For more information about the section of trail in Northampton, check out this Newtown Rail Trail webpage.

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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