Otto Vondrak wrote:("Welcome to Dutchess County. Please set your clocks 20 years back.") and created such a false-uproar that Metro-North went into retreat. Similar to the Rhinecliff proposal. It also doesnt help that many of the original stations suffer from Old Put Syndrome: either located in the middle of a village with no provision for expanded parking or located out in a farmers field away from population centers.
Correction: Welcome to Eastern
Dutchess County... and more like 40
On the western side of the county, you have the very populated Fishkill-Poughkeepsie corridor along the 4- (or more) lane divided U.S. route 9... and even 20 years ago, they had the Poughkeepsie Galleria up and running. It's no Westchester, but it's a lot busier than the eastern side of the county. (Well, yes, I suppose the same generalization can also be applied to anything north of Poughkeepsie.)
You're right on the mark with the Old Put syndrome though. You have stations like DP, Paterson and Pawling smack-dab in the village square, or places like Wassaic or Tenmile River that don't seem to be immediately near anything.
As for trails... no, definitely not
a good idea to have one right next to the other. There's a trail where I live now (about 15 miles east of Syracuse), which, for a short distance, runs pretty close to the CSX mainline. When a train comes by... well, it looks pretty cool to be that close (and legally) but it's also a little scary. You never know what kind of debris on the ground could suddenly be sent flying by a passing train. Sure, we're only talking small things like rocks or sticks, but hitting you at the right speed and in the right body parts, it can be a bad situation. Not to mention, if a train derails (like one did
, exactly one year ago tomorrow), you don't want to be rollerblading, biking or (worst of all) cross-country skiing that close to the tracks.
As an avid bicyclist, I'm all for trails... and rail trails are nice where it would otherwise mean an historic ROW would otherwise be claimed by weeds. But a rail trail right next to an active, high-speed line is a dangerous situation. All kidding aside, Otto may not be far off with his 2025 prediction