By Jake Lynch
In February of this year Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC)
hosted a gathering of urban planners and transportation experts in Camden,
N.J., to look at the bike/ped improvements that have been made in that city and
the exciting work being done to better connect Camden with Philadelphia and the
region. It was work we had been doing for a number of years, supported by visionary local organizations such the Campbell's Soup Foundation and the Coopers Ferry Partnership.
Sitting in the audience that day were a few key planners
from a city to the north, Boston. And they liked what they saw. The coordinated
effort of businesses, bike advocates, educators, health professionals, officials
and transportation planners in Camden and Philadelphia to create what is being
called "The Circuit" raised their hopes for a similar initiative in Boston.
Less than a year later and that work is already underway.
Led by the Boston Metropolitan Area Planning Council and the Livable Streets
Alliance, RTC's northeast staff has been called in to help replicate the unique
collaborative success of The Circuit.
That effort in Boston continues next week with the Metro
Boston Regional Trails and Greenway Summit, Dec. 11 and 12, during which
RTC staff will provide an update of the future of federal trail policy and
funding, and share what other cities are doing across America to advance their
It's one of RTC's great strengths and what makes us unique
in the world of trail building - few other organizations can combine both the
on-the-ground technical trail development nous with state and federal planning
and funding connections, and long relationships with elected officials and
Keep an eye on Boston. We'll keep you updated on the good
news coming out of Beantown.
Photo of RTC Northeast Regional Director Tom Sexton riding the streets of Camden by RTC
The Duke Ellington Building
2121 Ward Ct., NW
Washington, DC 20037