• Walkway Over the Hudson - Poughkeepsie Railroad Bridge

  • General discussion related to Rail Trails nationwide, including proposed rail trail routes. The official site of the Rails-To-Trails Conservancy can be found here: www.railstotrails.org.
General discussion related to Rail Trails nationwide, including proposed rail trail routes. The official site of the Rails-To-Trails Conservancy can be found here: www.railstotrails.org.

Moderator: railtrailbiker

  by nysw3636
The bridge over Mile Hill Road is now finished and open to vehicular traffic. I've been told that work on the rail trail is ahead of schedule.
  by Noel Weaver
I made it down to walk the bridge on Saturday, August 14th. The weather was absolutely ideal for this activity with temps. around 80, partly cloudy to sunny skies, low humidity
and a nice breeze. We arrived on the Highland side about 12:00 NOON and found a parking spot on the side of Havilland Road right next to the entrance of the bridge, lucked
out I guess. There was parking spots available in the $5.00 lots on both the Highland and Poughkeepsie sides. I think the parking is probably better than in the past by quite a
bit. The walk was very enjoyable but I thought I really accomplished something for myself by walking the round trip, about two and a half miles.
We saw three trains on the West Shore, several Amtrak trains on the Hudson and Metro-North in the Poughkeepsie Station.
Food, we ate at the Marriner's but I was somewhat dissappointed, they had a wedding party that afternoon and service was slow and I don't think the food was up to their
normal quality either. The setting there is outstanding though and we were not really in a hurry anyway.
Noel Weaver
  by nysw3636
Thought some would like to know that the rail trail from the Poughkeepsie Railroad Bridge to former end of the Hudson Valley Rail Trail is now paved. Although not officially opened until October 2nd, people have been using it (but not encouraged to do so)....
  by DonPevsner
Readers should be pleased to learn that the New York State Bridge Authority took legal title to the entire Poughkeepsie Bridge on December 22, 2010. This Authority owns and operates every Hudson River crossing from the Bear Mountain Bridge to the Rip Van Winkle Bridge, near Catskill. The property was conveyed by The Poughkeepsie-Highland Railroad Bridge Company, Inc.: a New York nonprofit corporation that was used by the Walkway Over The Hudson group to hold title since June 4, 1998. Of key importance: there has been little or no liability insurance on the Bridge since CONRAIL disposed of it to a convicted felon on November 2, 1984; and no "deep pockets" for required long-term maintenance. It is just damned lucky that no major accident transpired during this 26-year period.
[SEE: http://www.nysba.state.ny.us . ALSO SEE: http://www.walkway.org for December 22, 2010 press release by the New York State Bridge Authority, under "Press Releases". ]
  by Jeff Smith
Site admin note and apologies to moderator; I merged in some old topics to go along with current news.

Walkway Purchases Final Piece of Rail Trail

Brief, fair-use quote:
Walkers, bikers and skaters have reason to celebrate: CSX Railroad will sell Walkway Over the Hudson several pieces of land that will connect the walkway and the Dutchess Rail Trail -- providing a recreational resource envisioned for years stretching from East Fishkill north to the City of Poughkeepsie and into Ulster County.

The acquisition of the rail bed and properties in the city and town of Poughkeepsie provides a long-sought link between the walkway and trail.
  by Jeff Smith
Rail bed will link to NY's Walkway Over the Hudson

The deal's closed:
POUGHKEEPSIE, N.Y. (AP) -- Dutchess County has obtained a stretch of former rail bed that will connect the popular Walkway Over the Hudson with a local trail.

The Poughkeepsie Journal reports (http://pojonews.co/MfpDXK ) that the Walkway's nonprofit organization paid CSX railroad just over $1 million last week for the eight-tenths of a mile stretch of the rail bed in the city of Poughkeepsie. The acquisition will connect the Walkway with the Dutchess Rail Trail.

Walkway Over the Hudson has donated the rail trail to the county. Once the trail is paved, it will be part of a 12-mile trail system in Dutchess County.

The former Poughkeepsie-Highland Railroad Bridge opened to the public in 2009 as the Walkway Over the Hudson State Park. It attracts nearly a half million visitors a year.
  by march hare
Improved pedestrian access from the Poughkeepsie side is on its way. Work is set to begin in the next few months on an elevator, to be built on the south side of the bridge a few hundred feet in from the shoreline. It will be easy walking distance from the MNCR station and the associated parking garage.

Property is currently owned by Central Hudson (part of a former electirc generating station and gas plant, both long gone) and part of it is still in use as an electric substation and gas distribution and storage facility. A very small parcel (basically the foot proint of the elevator) will be sold to Parks and Rec, the access path is likely to be a right of way/easement rather than an actual sale.

My understanding is that the sale needs to be approved by the Public Service Commission, but this is expected shortly. Slated completion of the elevator is sometime before next summer, but I don't have better details than that.

This should make the bridge a more attractive destination for folks living south of Poughkeepsie, who can now take the train to the bridge more readily.

In the meantime, charging a few bucks for parking at a state (or national) park is hardly unprecedented. For example almost all of the national parks charge for vehicular access at the gate, whether you choose to park in the park or not. To some extent, this is intended to encourage people to leave their cars at home, so less land area is taken up by "un-park-like" things like paved parking lots.

And of course, the parking fees also help offset the fact that our politicians are no longer willing to provide public money for frivolous things like parks. Maintenance money's got to come from somewhere, and as a nation we seem to be allergic to taxes (which BTW are lower in the US than in practically any other civilized country on earth...but I digress)
  by bigK
a few weeks ago,March 5,I went down to Water Street to see if there was any construction related activity with both Upper Landing park and the Walkway elevator

there was construction fencing along along Water street in front of the old Hoffman house - other than the fencing there was no construction equipment in place and no other signs of construction activity

for a full report of the above,and activity at the old Dutton lumber yard,and pictures please visit my
Hudson Valley - cycling adventures and trailway reports blog
  by bigK
construction is underway as of 05-22-13

on my recent visits to the Walkway - 5/18 for the ceremony honoring Fred Schaeffer as the Rails To Trails Conservancy 2013 RT Champion and a return during the week for construction activity.I obtained a Walkway (org) membership card - on it was an artist's conception of what the elevator will look like - also I had learned from this card that there will be an ampitheater in the park that is being built



from the Walkway deck at the point where the elevartor access will be (top) looking down

wide angle view from the Walkway deck of Upper Landing Park construction

at river level - close up view of bridge in area of future elevator taken from the Mid Hudson Children's Museum across the Fallkill Creek


wide angle view of the BCI elevator construction staging area - BCI is the company awarded the contract to build the elevator
  by bigK

the Walkway elevator tower is now almost complete

the above photo was taken Fri. 07-12

and just 4 days later the above photo - work on the basic tower,top deck frame,and the frame for the elevator,is progressing
  by Jeff Smith
Surprised we didn't have a topic on this! Anyway, here is some news about a connection to Walkway over the Hudson:

http://www.recordonline.com/news/201804 ... -new-paltz" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Rail-trail extension underway near New Paltz

Chris White, the project manager for Ulster County, said the county is in charge of its 1.25-mile piece of the 5.5-mile-long project.

The Town of Lloyd has a .7-mile piece to the east back to the Walkway Over the Hudson by the Metro North train station.

The state Department of Transportation is charting the path of its 3.5-mile section, leading from near Lowe’s on Route 299 west into the Village of New Paltz, across Route 32 to the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail heading north.

The project will also link up to the trail that’s planned across the valley floor west to the Shawangunk Ridge.
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