ChesCo Commissioners endorse Circuit Trails

Chester County Commissioners sign the resolution endorsing the completion of the Greater Philadelphia Region Circuit Trail network.

The Chester County Commissioners this week signed a resolution endorsing the completion of the Circuit Trails network, a connected system of multi-purpose trails located in the greater Philadelphia area that, when complete, will comprise more than 750 miles of trails in the region.

Chester County is the first of the nine counties in the region to formally endorse the initiative, spearheaded by the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia.  This action helps to support the Coalition’s short term goal of 500 miles of trails by 2025.

Specifically, Chester County’s Resolution #14-17, approved during the May 4th Commissioners’ Public Meeting, “Endorses completion of the Circuit Trails comprising over 750 miles of current and planned trails in Chester County and the region, and supporting the designation of the existing Schuylkill River Trail, Chester Valley Trail, Struble Trail, Brandywine Trail, Uwchlan Trail and other trails to be added to the network within Chester County as “Circuit” trails.”

Commenting on the Resolution, Chester County Commissioners’ Chair Michelle Kichline noted:  “The development of trails is something that my fellow Commissioners and I feel very strongly about, not just to promote physical activity, but to also encourage connectivity and alternative transportation.  By now most people recognize that trails are a wonderful source of recreation, but we know that they also add value to the properties adjacent to the trails, and play an important role in Chester County’s economic development strategy.”

Sarah Clark Stuart, Executive Director of the Bicycle Coalition of Chester County, offered thanks to the Commissioners and the Chester County Planning Commission at the May 4th meeting. “We applaud you for taking the lead and passing this resolution. It is partners that make it possible for us to build out the Circuit Trail system that connects people to their communities and to their work, and having a completed circuit trail network in our region distinguishes us as one of the most completed urban and suburban trail networks in the country.”

May is National Bike Month, and Chester County’s network of trails allows for events such as the Annual Bike to Work Challenge, organized by the Transportation Management Association of Chester County on the Chester Valley Trail, and the Bike to Work with the Commissioners event on the Schuylkill River Trail organized by Greater Valley Forge Transportation Management Association, both on Friday, May 19th.

The Chester County Planning Commission will also be holding a public meeting on Wednesday, May 31st to present a feasibility study and master plan to extend the Chester Valley Trail west to Downingtown, and link with the Struble Trail and the East Branch Brandywine Trail.  That meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. at the West Whiteland Township Building.  For more information go to http://www.chescoplanning.org/transportation/cvte.cfm.

Pictured in photo above: Front  left to right are Commissioners Terence Farrell, Michelle Kichline and Kathi Cozzone.  Pictured back, left to right are: Brian Styche, Transportation Services Director for the Chester County Planning Commission; Amanda Lozinak, Manager of Public Engagement for the Transportation Management Association of Chester County and Bike Chester County; David Shuey, of Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia; Michael Broennle of Friends of the Chester Valley Trail; Sarah Clark Stuart, Executive Director of the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia; and Brian O’Leary, Executive Director, Chester County Planning Commission.

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