Maryland is planning to build a new railroad bridge over the Susquehanna River by 2023, and is hosting an open house later this month about it.
That will include discussion of a pedestrian and bicycle path across the river.
“We have about 7,500 signatures on a petition to support this effort,” said Andy Hamilton, mid-Atlantic coordinator for East Coast Greenway Alliance. “Our goal is, in the planning process, that bicycle and pedestrian use be considered and included either on the new bridge or an existing bridge.”
“We’re trying to link Cecil County to the rest of Maryland for alternative transportation,” Hamilton said Tuesday.
Pointing to the crammed parking lots connected to the MARC rail station in Perryville, and other large employers in the area, Hamilton said the need for an eco-friendly commute is obvious.
“We have so many commuters from IKEA, the Veterans Administration Medical Center (at Perry Point) and all the cars that have to park at the railroad station,” he said. “Imagine if half of those commuted to work by bike. It really could change things a lot.”
Not only would this trail become part of the Lower Susquehanna Heritage Greenway, but also part of a national trail system remembering the terrorist attacks in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. in 2001.
According to Hamilton, this Susquehanna River trail is included in the Sept. 11 Greenway.
“It needs this bridge too. It will link all three crash sites,” he said.
[Harry Romano, project manager for the Maryland Department of Transportation] said for now the project is “simply a railroad bridge.”