Study to Evaluate Feasibility of a Multi-Use Trail on the Merritt Parkway Corridor to Begin

Fri January 13, 2012 - Northeast Edition

The Connecticut Department of Transportation Department is beginning a study to evaluate the feasibility of a Multi-Use Trail along the Merritt Parkway corridor.

The study will consider a trail that would span the entire 37.5 mi. (60 km) of the Merritt Parkway, stretching from the New York State border in the town of Greenwich to the Sikorsky Bridge and Housatonic River in the town of Stratford. The trail would be located primarily adjacent to and south of the parkway within the undeveloped highway right-of-way and it would utilize the wooded buffer that exists between the roadway and abutting properties.

As part of the study, an extensive public outreach campaign will be undertaken in each of the eight communities along the parkway. Public input, along with an inventory of the existing conditions and features of the corridor, will be used to develop a conceptual design for the multi-use trail. In addition, environmentally sensitive areas will be documented and options to avoid them, including the possible diversion of the trail onto local roads in select areas, will be explored.

The department plans to hold a series of public meetings for this study, which will be arranged in coordination with the individual municipalities.

This study will be undertaken with a grant from the National Scenic Byways Program and State funds.