Thanks to everyone who attended the public information session in Harwinton last night (3/6/2019). And, thanks for staying polite and professional. Here’s what we learned:
- NVCOG has officially removed two of the six routes from consideration. Unfortunately, these are not the two that we want removed. Notably, they have removed the route that would have followed the active rail bed on top of the riding area on the west side. This leaves just three real possibilities regarding the area that we care about: abandoned Rt. 8.; abandoned rail bed; or east side of the river starting along the ACoE property beneath the ranger station.
- As did Steve Patchkofsky at the Thomaston meeting, Chris Way (Steve’s boss) confirmed the ACoE’s commitment to keeping the trail bike area open – he even mentioned plans to expand the parking areas that we current use.
- After Chris Way made this statement, we asked the NVCOG presenters if, given this statement from the ACoE, that they would be removing abandoned Rt. 8 and the abandoned rail bed from the map of possible routes. They did not give a definitive answer. This is our ultimate goal and it is worrisome that NVCOG would not give an answer.
- We spoke with one of the NVCOG presenters after the meeting. He continued to imply and ask about sharing the trail bike area with other users. This indicates to us that this is what they’re thinking. We maintain that there is no viable way to share this land. There is no productive coexistence.
- After the meeting we spoke with Chris Way. Our main question for him was “At what level of your chain of command will the decision to use or not to use the trail bike area for the greenway be made?” He indicated that it was he who had that authority. This is good news because he has repeatedly made statements committing to the trail bike area. HOWEVER, we have to stay vigilant. Life happens… What if Chris and Steve both win the Powerball and move to tropical islands? We could end up with ACoE leaders who don’t support us. This is why we have to continue to motivate NVCOG to remove those two lines from their map of possible routes.
- We hope that some of you will be able to attend the Litchfield Community Center meeting tonight (3/7/2019) at 5:30 PM.
Let’s keep up the good work. We can win this!!!
The WRTD Team