Chadds Ford Business Association members were given a brief update on the proposed Walkable Chadds Ford project during the CFBA March lunch meeting at the Chadds Ford Historical Society. Beth Burnam, of the Brandywine Conservancy, and Chadds Ford Township Supervisor Noelle Barbone made the presentation.
During the presentation, Barbone announced that the Harvey Run Trail, which connects township and conservancy properties, is scheduled to officially open on April 29.
The trail — which is included in the Walkable Chadds Ford concept — extends from the township property at Ring Road, goes behind Turner’s Mill, and connects with and connects with conservancy land behind Potts Meadow. People can then cross Station Way Road and walk to the Brandywine River Museum of Art and then go to the trail along the Brandywine Creek.
Walkable Chadds Ford is an idea that, proponents say, would generate better accessibility to businesses in the Chadds Ford village area. As Burnam said, “There’s no way to get from point A to point B.”
She then went on to tell a story about a couple visiting Chadds Ford. They had stayed at the Brandywine River Hotel behind The Barn Shoppes and wanted to go to the museum, but had to take a shuttle because they could notwalk across Route 1.
Among things being considered for the plan are a boardwalk between Route 1 and the Chadds Ford Historical Society and a walking and bicycle lane along the south side of Route 1 to connect conservancy property with the rest of the village.
She spoke about the idea of “complete streets” where pedestrians and cyclists have safe access. Those streets would have traffic calming devices to help make them safer.
But, there are still no final answers as to where things will go, how much they might cost or who would pay for them. Barbone called the transition from concept to reality a “work in progress.”
The supervisor said a Walkable Chadds Ford Committee is looking at existing conditions in order to see what is possible and make further recommendations. A consulting firm, Simone Collins, is exploring current traffic patterns, walkways, bridge crossings and trying to get a cost estimate.