The Park Authority has published a preliminary set of plans for the builiding of the new Pohick Stream Valley - Liberty Bell Trail, projected for completion in 2014-15. This trail is designed to connect to the new Burke VRE trail that runs from Burke VRE station along Pohick Stream to Coffer Woods at Burke Lake Road. Here is a link to an approximation of the routing.
FCPA is taking public comments until Jan. 14. Send them to Thomas McFarland, project manager, 12055 Government Center Pkwy., Suite 406, Fairfax, VA 22035, firstname.lastname@example.org.
The new section of trail will run from Burke Lake Road, behind the Burke Post Office and Burke Nursury, and connect to Burke Road, past the ninety degree turn where it will join new Burke Road bike lanes to the Rolling Road VRE. The community along Shiplett Boulevard in the vicinity of White Oaks Elementary will be able to connect to the trail via an existing Park Authority trail connecting at Hatches Court.
This exciting addition to our community will allow non-motorized connection to the two VRE stations, shops on the Shiplett/Old Keene Mill Road side of Springfield, Target and Walmart, many churches and schools, and the Burke Post Office. For many of us, it will be faster to ride a bike to our destination than drive.
Last April, the Park Authority promised to make a preliminary plan set available for public review. The plans are available at the West Springfield Government Center, in the Supervisors Office, and at the FCPA Planning and development division until Jan 14 for public comment. The link takes you to a pdf version of the plans, I found them easier to see in person and while at Supervisor Herrity's office you can ask for the new County Bike Map!
While largely happy with the plans, I have requested reconsideration of the location of the trailhead at Burke Lake Road, I would like it closer to the intersection of Coffer Woods Road, and I would like the Hatches Court trail upgraded. It is going to be an important connection for Shiplett community residents.
I encourage you to see the plans and submit comments. Public input is critical to the project's success. These trail projects enhance our community and make it possible to easily get around by walking and biking. They are also wonderful recreation opportunities!