The National Park Service's National Capitol Region (NCR) recently released a draft version of its "Paved Trails Study", which serves as a plan for how NCR sees the paved trail network, both within and outside of the parks, developing in the future and as an update to the 1990 plan. In addition to identifying several high priority capital projects, the NPS Paved Trails Study also identifies some lower priority capital projects which it groups by park.
Comments are open until May 19th.
Here are all the paved trail projects identified for the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail
Short term (2-5 years)
- (P1.1) Complete multi-use trail facility between Mount Vernon Estate and Gardens and Woodlawn
- (P1.2) Pursue designation of POHE from C&O Canal terminus with Rock Creek Park Multiuse Trail within the National Mall area and connecting to the 11th Street Bridge, linking up to the South Capitol Street Trail.
Mid-term (5-10 years)
- (P3.1) Develop a local trailhead at Fort Washington Park
- (P3.1) Develop a local trailhead at Harmony Hall Community Center
- (P3.1) Develop a local trailhead at Fort Foote Park
Abandoned since 1990 are the following
- Develop the Potomac Heritage Trail from Oxon Cove to National Harbor (though there are elements in the new plan oriented toward connecting the two)
- Extend the Potomac Heritage Trail south from National Harbor (then Port America) as a paved trail to Fort Foote.
- Install a paved trail through Fort Foote using an existing service road alignment
- Build the paved Potomac Heritage Trail across the mouth of Broad Creek near Harmony Hall and connect it to the Henson Creek Trail
- Develop a gravel hiking trail near the Potomac shoreline along Piscataway Park
- Encourage PG County to make an on-street spur trail to Fort Washington
The scaling back of the Potomac Heritage Trail from a Maryland side Mt. Vernon Trail to...whatever it is now, is perhaps the most shocking change in the last 25 years.
The proposal for the Wilson Bridge shows a trail along the Potomac shore with a spiral connection from the north side of the bridge to the trail that would have made for a much shorter trip to DC. Sigh...