Last week the National Park Service made formal one of the worst kept secrets by announcing that Washington and Allegany Counties will receive $660,000 worth of stimulus money to be put toward resurfacing the C&O canal towpath. That is only a small part of the work that will be done to improve the towpath.
Kevin Brandt, superintendent of Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park, said millions of dollars in federal money is earmarked for C&O trail improvements.
This fall, crews are scheduled to begin repaving the most problematic stretches of the trail with a gravel mix, paid for with $660,000 from the American Reinvestment and Recovery Fund, Brandt said.
An additional $12 million has been allocated to restore sections of the trail that washed out years ago near an area known as Big Slackwater, he said. The park applied for $4.4 million more for other upgrades, he said.
"We're absolutely thrilled and working furiously," Brandt said. "People will see big improvements."
And there is more here (though it isn't specifically about the towpath)
Ideas such as rebuilding and re-watering the deteriorated Conococheague Aqueduct have been talked about for years, but Williamsport Mayor James G. McCleaf II said a new enthusiasm is building.
Officials of Williamsport, which is steeped in canal history, and C&O Canal National Historical Park officials did not communicate well in the past, but the two sides are working together these days, McCleaf said.
About $1 million in state highway funds were sought to put the railroad lift bridge back into operation and to restore Lock 44.
Photo by frumperino