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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Potter County Kicks Off Greenways and Trails Plan

Planners Look At Recreational Trails

Potter County Planning Commission will seek public input on a greenways and trails plan Tuesday, June 16, at 6 pm in the F. W. Gunzburger County Office Building, 1 North Main Street, Coudersport.

Speakers will describe the purpose and benefits of greenways and trails to Potter County, and ask citizens and local officials for their ideas and opinions.

“Developing greenways and trails will have numerous benefits,” stated Paul Heimel, vice-chairman of the Potter County Board of Commissioners. “They can provide recreational opportunities, protect water quality, and diminish flood risks. We can use greenways and trails to enhance our quality of life as well as to promote economic development through tourism.”

Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources defines a greenway as “a corridor of open space.” Greenways can encompass areas of land or water. They can be transportation and recreation-based, such as walking paths, bike lanes and rail-trails, or they can be natural resource-based, such as conserving areas that provide stormwater management or protection of water supply resources.

Goal of the plan is to develop a network of trails and natural area corridors linking Potter County’s municipalities, parks and important historic and cultural places. At the June 16 session, the public will be asked to help identify the places to connect, the types of corridors needed and the priorities.

Charlotte Dietrich, Director of Planning for Potter County, noted “The economic benefits of greenways and trails have been well established. They spin off new business opportunities such as bike and boat rentals, trailside restaurants and lodgings. They bring tourism dollars into the region. We have some of the most beautiful natural resources in the Commonwealth right here in northcentral Pennsylvania. A network of greenways and trails will allow us to tap into their economic potential.”

Northcentral Pennsylvania Regional Planning and Development Commission hired Pashek Associates of Pittsburgh to prepare the plan. The project is partially funded with a Community Conservation Partnership Program grant provided by the Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources with matching funds provided by participating counties.


Anonymous said...

With all the tourism talk why not back water up in the the george stevenson dam below wharton and make a real nice tourist area not to mention the jobs it would create in the local area.

Anonymous said...

can't, that would make too much sense.

Anonymous said...

Too bad the area is so far behind cattarugus county and their neighbors!" Rails for trails" !! Brad

Anonymous said...

ok great idea how much is it going to cost the tax payer