|By: Lea Kahn , Staff Writer , Lawrence Ledger||As published 11/02/2006|
The Lawrence-Hopewell trail is a planned 20-mile bicycle and pedestrian loop, introduced in 2001.
The next links in the Lawrence-Hopewell Trail should be completed and ready for bicyclists and pedestrians by spring 2008, said Lawrence-Hopewell Trail Task Force co-Chairwomen Eleanor Horne and Becky Taylor.
Those links — through the Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed, Mercer County Park Northwest, Rosedale Park, the Carson Road Woods and a link from Village Park to Keefe Road — are in the planning stages.
The Lawrence-Hopewell Trail is a planned 20-mile bicycle and pedestrian loop that would connect Lawrence and Hopewell townships. The proposal was introduced in 2001, with several segments built since. The completed portions of the trail are marked by the LHT’s green triangular sign.
In Lawrence, the trail meanders through The Lawrenceville School campus, the village of Lawrenceville, on into Village Park. A portion of the trail also has been built on the Educational Testing Service campus, off Rosedale and Carter roads.
“We are delighted to see more people using the trail on our campus,” said Ms. Horne, executive vice president at ETS. “(ETS employees) tagged 100 species of trees and plants. We want people to get off their bicycles and look at the vegetation.”
A 1.2-mile stretch of the trail also has been built in Hopewell Township, along Bristol Myers-Squibb Co.’s frontage on Pennington-Rocky Hill Road, between Titus Mill Road and Old Mill Road.
There now are plans to build a segment of the path from the Bristol Myers-Squibb property to the Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed property in Hopewell Township, Ms. Horne said. Engineering and environmental studies are under way, she said.
Mercer County officials are contracting for the design and engineering work to build a one-mile segment of the path through Rosedale Park and Mercer County Park Northwest, said Ms. Taylor, who is senior director of corporate communications for Bristol-Myers Squibb Co.
Plans for a one-mile path through the Lawrence Township-owned Carson Road Woods have not been finalized, she said. LHT officials are planning to talk to neighbors of the Carson Road Woods property and to township officials, she added.
Portions of the trail also will be constructed on private property, and LHT officials want to speak to property owners about how the trail’s route will impact them personally, Ms. Horne said.
Ms. Horne and Ms. Taylor said they are delighted with the reception that the LHT has received from residents of the two townships. In fact, Hopewell Borough and Pennington Borough officials have expressed interest in creating links to the path from their towns as well, they said.
“There has been total support for the trail,” Ms. Horne said. “It has been a long time since people were critical of the trail. The only criticism we get is that people want more.”
Ms. Taylor agreed.
“People in Lawrence and Hopewell seem to be enthusiastic,” she said. “They are getting impatient (for it to be built). We wouldn’t be on the path to where we are without (Lawrence and Hopewell officials’) support. Our challenge is to take advantage and move forward in a concrete way.”
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