MAY 1997

MAPC Recommends ARRT Funding

The Metropolitan Area Planning Council (MAPC) has recommended that the Assabet River Rail Trail receive funding in fiscal year 1998 to begin acquiring portions of the right-of-way of the former Marlborough Rail Line, and to start designing the section of trail in Marlborough and Hudson.

Under a grant proposal submitted by the five ARRT towns (Marlborough, Hudson, Stow, Maynard, and Acton), the towns would receive $668,000 to acquire the legal rights for the continuous 12.5 mile right-of-way. The grant also requests $105,000 for design of the four-mile segment from Marlborough to Hudson.

As a regional project that enhances existing transportation options, and enjoying broad community support, ARRT ranked near the top of MAPC transportation projects.

The grant proposal is now under review by the State Enhancement Steering Committee, which will make the final determination on eligibility and implementability.

Funding for the grant is contingent upon the renewal of the federal Transportation Enhancement Program of the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (istea). Legislation to renew istea is currently before Congress.

Michelle Ciccolo, Hudson's Assistant Administrator, coordinated the work of volunteers and officials from all five towns. Thank you Michelle, and congratulations to all helped with the grant proposal.

Marlborough Clean-Up May 17

On Saturday, May 17, from 9:00a.m. to 1:00 p.m., ARRT supporters and volunteers will clear the section of right-of-way between Ash and Fitchburg Streets in Marlborough.

Clean-up participants should wear sturdy clothes and bring gloves, loppers, bow saws, shovels, and rakes. There is some poison ivy on this stretch of trail.

Meet at Stratus Computer's lower parking lot on Fairbanks Boulevard for work assignments and to sign a release form.

ARRT, Wayside Volunteers to Discuss Common Interests at May 29 Meeting

At the next ARRT volunteers' meeting. representatives from both Metrowest rail-trail projects will discuss their common interests.

According to ARRT volunteer Jeff Richards of Hudson, the two projects have much in common, since both serve several of the same communities, and in Hudson, both may even share the same right-of-way.

Andrew Greene of the Wayside Rail Trail Committee will be available to update ARRT volunteers on the status of the Wayside project.

The next ARRT volunteers' meeting will be Thursday, May 29, at 7:00 p.m., at the Stow Public Library.

Voice Your Support for Transportation Enhancements

The Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act (istea) is currently under consideration in Congress. ISTEA Transportation Enhancements Program provides the federal funds that help make rail-to-trail projects such as ARRT possible.

The ARRT volunteers urge you to voice your support of the ISTEA Transportation Enhancements Program. Write Congressman Martin Meehan and let him know you are in favor of funding the Enhancements Program. His address is:

Mr. Martin Meehan
U.S: Representative
Walker Building, Room 102
255 Main Street
Marlborough, MA 01752