I’m very pleased to report that the City of Northampton, Northampton Business Improvement District, and Smith College have agreed to collaborate to clear snow from the new section of the Northampton Rail Trail. The following press release provides the details. Kudos to the Mayor, the Business Improvement District, Smith College and Hilary Caws-Elwitt and others for their work on this important project.
The release (dated November 30, 2012) states:
Mayor Narkewicz is pleased to announce that a previously unplowed section of the Manhan Rail Trail from Main Street to King Street will be cleared of snow this winter through a new collaboration with Smith College and the Business Improvement District (BID).
Smith College has generously offered to sell the City a 2009 Kubota RTV 1100, at a significantly reduced price, that includes a contribution from the BID. This new piece of City equipment will be used by the BID to remove snow on the trail from Main Street to King Street as part of its downtown snow clearing operations. The RTV is equipped with a 5 way power angle plow and a sand/salt sander that will enable snow to be cleared from the trail. The BID currently uses a City owned street sweeper under a similar arrangement.
“In the last two years, the rail trail network has transformed bicycle and pedestrian travel around downtown Northampton, for eight months a year. This link will allow these new travel opportunities to continue throughout the year,” said Mayor Narkewicz.
“Smith College has been pleased to support a number of bike access projects that serve our students, employees, and the community at large. We are glad to be able to facilitate greater year-round use of this key section of the bike path,” said Laurie Fenlason, Vice President for Public Affairs at Smith College.
“The Northampton rail trails are a draw for tourists, vvisitors and residents from the surrounding neighborhoods and by providing access year round will continue to make Northampton a top tourist destination,” said Dan Yacuzzo, Director the Northampton BID.
The Main Street to King Street bike path is approximately one mile in length and was completed by the State in the fall of 2010. The King Street connection provides the missing link from Downtown Northampton to Leeds.