Geralyn Adams and Norman Dyson ride on Indian Head's Rail Trail. Photo Credit: Ann Cameron Siegal for The Washington Post.
The only meeting where I got absolutely beat down, when I was doing the Western Baltimore County Pedestrian and Bicycle Access Plan, was over plans to put a trail in a particular park just east of Towson. I had a bit of hubris about my ability to deal with opposition going into the meeting and I got schooled, big time.
In my observation, they were against the trail not just because they had spent so much time fixing up the park, but because of "misuse" by mountain bikers in the adjacent Loch Raven Reservoir, and they expected that providing multi-use trail access would lead to all kinds of problems.
I countered that with the right design and management (although at this time Baltimore County doesn't have park rangers) you can design out the potential for problems. I even suggested that the State (Gunpowder Falls State Park + the NCR Trail), Baltimore City (which owns Loch Raven Reservoir), and the County (Cromwell Valley Park) join together and do a joint management plan for the parks, which abut each other...
I still got my clock cleaned.
But I am struck today, reading the Post
real estate section, which today features Indian Head, Prince George's County, in the "Where We Live
" column on neighborhoods, how many of the recent articles in this feature have specifically mentioned multiuse trails. Today's article has a nice photo of people riding on the Indian Head Rail Trail (shown above).
Labels: bicycling, neighborhood planning, neighborliness, real estate development, urban design/placemaking, walking