CUMBERLAND VALLEY, PA (November 7, 2014) - The Cumberland Valley Rails-to-Trails Council (CVRTC) received state grant funding to extend the Cumberland Valley Rail Trail eastward from its current terminus in Newville, PA. The Cumberland Area Economic Development Corporation (CAEDC) and the Cumberland County Planning Department assisted the CVRT with the applications for both grants.
The CVRTC applied for a grant through the Community Conservation Partnership Program (C2P2) through the Department of Conservation & Natural Resources. The C2P2 program is designed to support land conservation, sustainable green projects and trail development, among other purposes. On October 17, 2014, DCNR announced a $500,000 grant for the CVRTC. This grant will be used to construct an underpass beneath Centerville Rd. (PA Rt. 233), a busy and dangerous state road that bisects the trail.
The CVRTC also applied for a grant through the Commonwealth Finance Authority's (CFA) Greenways, Trails and Recreation (GTR) Program. The GTR program supports the development of greenways, trails, open space, and parks. It is funded with fees paid by the natural gas drilling industry. The CFA awarded the CVRTC a $150,000 grant on October 21, 2014. This grant will be used to install a bridge over Big Spring Road trail so that users can safely cross the road at this location.
The CVRTC is currently in the process of placing a bridge over Fogelsanger Rd. and extending the trail over a mile to the southwest into downtown Shippensburg. The CVRT is recognized as a National Recreation Trail and includes pedestrian and equestrian tracks. The trail has three trailheads with parking and public facilities, contains historical and heritage signage, and supports several annual community events. The estimated annual economic impact of the Cumberland Valley Rail Trail is over $458,000.
"These grants are critical to the continued build out of the Cumberland Valley Rail Trail and they also invest in projects which ensure the safety of the users of the trail," said Jonathan Bowser, CAEDC CEO. "With the grants, Newville can continue to pursue a Trail Town designation & related opportunities while the trail continues to extend eastward toward Carlisle, PA."
CAEDC would like to thank all the stakeholders who support the CVRT and our government officials for their support in acquiring these grants including: Cumberland County Commissioners Cross, Hertzler and Eichelberger, PA State Senators Eichelberger and Vance, PA State Representative Bloom, U.S. Congressman Barletta, and all others who represent Cumberland County and supported this effort.
About CAEDCCAEDC is Cumberland County's authorized agency charged with leveraging and promoting Cumberland Valley's economic development and tourism assets to drive growth, create jobs and improve the quality of life. Offices are located at 53 W. South Street, Carlisle PA. For more information, visit www.cumberlandbusiness.com and www.visitcumberlandvalley.com.