May 1998

Acton Town Meeting Approves Rail Trail Articles
Two articles authorizing the Town of Acton to appropriate funds for the first phase of the rail trail project were passed at Town Meeting on April 6.

Ed Adelman, a member of the town's Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC), made the presentation for both articles at the same time. Using slides and overheads, Ed was concise and to the point, letting the meeting members do most of the talking.

The articles faced some vocal opposition from residents who handed out flyers and brochures, citing the same statistics that the Weston opponents used in their defeat of that town's rail trail proposal.

For every opponent who spoke, however, there was a supporter. One of the most effective supporters was another member of TAC, Renee Robins. She is also an abutter, and helped counter the fearful claims of the opponents.

Article 3, to raise the matching funds of up to $30,000, passed on a voice vote. Article 4, which requested the $150,000 of reimbursable spending, required a two-thirds majority. It passed by eight votes, 335 to 154.

Our thanks to the town officials and boards who supported the articles, and to Ed Adelman, who did a lot of work in a short time, for his excellent presentation. Thanks also to ARRT volunteers Patrick Cleland, Jim Dickeson, and Kathryn Garcia, for their help in preparing for the meeting.

Hudson Town Meeting Monday, May 4; Stow and Maynard May 18

Following April's successful Town Meeting vote in Acton, articles concerning ARRT will appear on town meeting warrants in Hudson, Stow, and Maynard. The articles will ask voters to authorize their selectmen to negotiate for the acquisition of key parcels along the former Marlborough Railroad for the purpose of creating a bicycle and pedestrian path. These town meetings are critically important to ARRT's success. If you are a registered voter in Maynard, Stow, or Hudson, please attend town meeting and vote in favor of ARRT.

ARRT Awarded DEM Greenways Grant
The Assabet River Rail Trail has receivd a grant of $3,000 from the Department of Environmental Management's Greenways and Trails Demonstration Grant program. The grant will be used to conduct a natural resource inventory and assessment of the proposed ARRT route. Through a series of field trips this spring along the Marlborough Railroad right-of-way, students from each town will identify and document existing significant flora and fauna along the route. ARRT has hired Markus Pinney, a land-use specialist from Lexington, to serve as a consultant and field trip leader on the project.

Contact Jeff Richards, 978 568-1864.

Informational Meeting in Maynard Planned for May 12
In preparation for this month's Maynard town meeting, ARRT volunteers will be holding an informational meeting for Maynard residents to discuss the project. The meeting will provide Maynard residents with an opportunity to share their ideas and express their concerns about ARRT.

The meeting will be held Tuesday, May 12, at 7:30 p.m., in Maynard Town Hall, room 201.

Contact Robin Schulman, 978 897-5906.

Appraisal Underway in Four Towns
The appraisals being performed as part of the 1997 grant ARRT received for land acquisition are currently underway in Hudson, Stow, Maynard, and Acton.

The appraisal firm of Avery Associates has begun appraising 30 separate parcels. To better understand the properties, appraisers have sections of the ARRT route with town officials and ARRT volunteers.

The appraisals are expected to be completed later this spring.

ARRT Volunteers Clear Marlborough Section
More than 20 volunteers cleared a 200 foot section of the abandoned right-of-way in Marlborough. With the help of Girl Scout troop 2738 of Hudson, the volunteers cleared brush, cut trees, and hauled away hundreds of pounds of trash, including more than 30 tires. Thanks to all who helped with a successful clean up.

Upcoming ARRT Events

May 7   Monthly meeting   Maynard Town Hall, 7:00 p.m.
   May 12  Community Informational Meeting  Maynard 
   June 11 Monthly Meeting Marlborough location TBD, 7:00 p.m.
   June 14 River Ride, cosponsored with Sudbury Valley Trustees and Nashoba Valley Peddlers Contact Mark Geoffroy, 508 485-0747, for more information

Next ARRT Volunteers' Meeting May 7
The next ARRT volunteers' meeting is planned for Thursday, May 7, at 7:00 p.m., in the Maynard Town Hall. We will be discussing preparations for this month's town meetings,  and other spring events.