LHT collaborates with community, government, corporate, and nonprofit partners to manage the construction, maintenance, and use of the LHT. We actively search for and help create connections to adjacent areas and other trail networks to ensure the long-term viability of the trail.
The idea for the LHT started in 2001 when a group of community leaders met at Bristol-Myers Squibb to address concerns about diminishing opportunities for safe, off-road biking and walking. State, county and local government representatives and several private organizations soon joined the effort. The Lawrence Hopewell Trail Corporation, an independent nonprofit organization, was then formed to investigate the possibility of constructing a biking and walking trail. The LHT Corporation is led by an all-volunteer board of community leaders and meets regularly to advocate and make strategic plans to manage the trail with the unique collaboration of government, business, non-profit, and private sector groups that are involved.
The idea for the Lawrence Hopewell Trail grew out of a commitment on the part of Bristol-Myers Squibb to improve the quality of life for all who live or work in the two townships and all of Mercer County. Education Testing Service soon joined the effort, and the two corporations served as the physical anchors for the trail and primary sources of financial support for the nascent project. Mercer County and Lawrence and Hopewell Townships soon became essential partners, along with the D&R Greenway Land Trust, the Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed (now the Watershed Institute), and St. Lawrence Rehabilitation Center.
The first trail segment was constructed, the same year that the LHTC received its federal tax exemption as a 501-c-3 corporation.
The NJ Department of Transportation supported a major study that projected use of the trail and identified possible approaches to some of the most challenging segments. That seminal document continues to serve us well. Financial and/or in-kind support for the LHT has come from BMS, the largest single donor to the trail since its inception, as well as ETS, Mercer County, the Mercer County Park Commission, Lawrence and Hopewell Townships, the NJ Department of Transportation, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, the Watershed Institute, D&R Greenway Land Trust, the Lawrenceville School, Prism Capital Partners, Capital Health, and individual donors.
Community use of the LHT and community support continue to grow. Trail use counters placed at a strategic location along the LHT document the upward trend in use, with over 56,000 trail entries recorded in 2017 at one primary location.
To receive a copy of our financials, please email us.
The LHT is about connections—with people, and places. There are a few short connector trails to other communities and trail systems, with more being planned. A short trail leads from the LHT to Pennington. Princeton also has a trail network that currently leads close to the LHT. At the Brearley House, a short connector trail leads to the D & R Canal, a 70-mile pathway along the Delaware River and canal system through Hunterdon, Mercer, and Somerset counties. Additional connections to Hopewell Borough, Ewing, and Princeton are under consideration.
The LHT is a key member of the Circuit Trails, an 800-mile network of bicycle and pedestrian trails connecting people to jobs, communities, and parks in the Greater Philadelphia Region. The Circuit Trails network begins south of Philadelphia, extends northeast to the LHT, and connects to the East Coast Greenway to the east and to the Appalachian Trail to the west.
Once complete, the Circuit Trails will be one of the nation’s premier urban trail networks. It will make our region stronger by providing a place for healthy transportation and recreation, connecting our communities to green space, and making our neighborhoods more attractive places to live and work.
For more information www.circuittrails.org/
Since its inception, the LHT has achieved many milestones with the support of public and private partners. These include:
Local government partners
• Hopewell Township
• Lawrence Township
• Mercer County
• Mercer County Park Commission
• NJ Department of Environmental Protection
• NJ Department of Transportation
• Bristol Myers-Squibb
• Prism Capital Partners
• REI Co-op
Non-Profit and Regional Partners
• Capital Health System
• Circuit Trails Coalition
• Friends of Carson Road Woods
• Friends of Hopewell Valley Open Space
• Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission
• Delaware & Raritan Greenway Land Trust
• The Lawrenceville School
• New Jersey Conservation Foundation
• Watershed Institute
The Historic Hunt House
197 Blackwell Road
Pennington, NJ 08534