BOSTON– The Boston Region Metropolitan Planning Organization (Boston MPO), the state planning agency which decides how federal transportation dollars are spent for metropolitan Boston communities, including Acton and Maynard, recently voted to issue $726K for the final design services to the Assabet River Rail Trail (ARRT). The ARRT segment runs from the Commuter Rail Station in South Acton to White Pond Road at the town line of Maynard and Stow for a total of approximately 3.4 miles.
“I’m very pleased that the Boston MPO voted to fund the Assabet River Rail Trail, which runs through the district that I represent,” said Senator Eldridge (D-Acton). “This funding is a testament to the advocacy efforts of rail trail and bicyclist enthusiasts, municipal officials, and town staff who have dedicated a great amount of effort to make these rail trails a reality. More and more, rail trails are not just a way for people to get outdoors and exercise, but they are an alternative mode of transportation for people to get to work or to the train.”
“Rail trails are a win for everyone,” said Rep. Cory Atkins (D-Concord). “They repurpose old infrastructure, they reduce dependence on cars, and they give people a great place to walk, run, or bike. I am pleased that the MPO has voted to fund the Assabet River Rail Trail.”
“Completion of the Assabet River Rail Trail improves the quality of life of our residents with every mile that’s paved for biking and walking – it also provides important access to public transportation,” said Representative Kate Hogan (D-Stow). “Connecting our towns in MetroWest to commuter rail service and the metro-Boston area remains one of our region’s greatest challenges.”
“It is excellent to hear that the Boston MPO will allocate funding for the final design services to the Assabet River Rail Trail (ARRT). ARRT has worked effortlessly with surrounding communities, organizations, and residents to advocate for the creation of a rail trail that connects the various communities, including Acton,” said Representative Jennifer Benson (D-Lunenburg). “The rail trail is an asset to our region, as it creates a space that encourages residents to be more active, provides an alternative route to the South Acton train station, and establishes a sense of community between five different municipalities.”
“I look forward to the project going out to bid in Fiscal 2015,” said President of the Assabet River Rail Trail, Inc. Tom Kelleher. “The track removal this spring was a great preview of what’s coming!”
In Acton +/- 1.1 miles: From the south side access of the commuter rail station in South Acton (currently under construction) the trail crosses Maple Street, enters and traverses along the edge of town-owned farm land in a southeasterly direction, and then runs south on the town-owned former B&M Railroad’s Marlborough Branch line to the Wedgewood property/parking lot at 20 Main Street, Acton. The trail detours around the front of the 20 Main Street facility, reconnects with the former Marlborough branch line on the south side, and then runs south to the Maynard town line. An easement is required at 20 Main Street.
In Maynard +/- 2.3 miles: from the Acton town line southerly on the former railroad branch line across Acton Street, Concord Street to Sumer Street. Through downtown Maynard the trail runs through the parking lot behind the downtown stores to and across the Assabet River onto Railroad Street, across Florida Road to Main Street (Route 62). Then the trail crosses Main Street and runs along the Clock Tower Place parking lot to Sudbury Street, turns left onto Sudbury Street and then immediately right onto the former Marlborough branch railroad right-of-way alongside High Street to Mill Street and Great Road (Rt. 117). At Great Road, the trail crosses the mill canal together with Great Road and then crosses Great Road to the southwest side into Winter Street. From there it runs along Winter Street for a short distance and then back onto the railroad right of way, past the Maynard DPW garage, and then more or less alongside the Assabet River to end at White Pond Road, the Stow town line, and the access to the Assabet River National Wildlife Refuge. Several easements are required.