Friday, October 16, 2009
We all want something from big government. There are few public works projects of which I approve, but this seems like an absolutely spectacular use of $400,000.
When the missing 1.5-mile link of the Delaware and Raritan Canal path in Trenton is completed, the 70-mile nature trail will run continuously from Frenchtown to New Brunswick.
Work on the $400,000 project will start soon, Mark Mauriello, acting commissioner for the state Department of Environmental Protection, said today.
It would be great to be able to ride from Princeton to Lambertville via the tow path (rather than over roads, which involve some very challenging hills and no chance for conversation with your friends), but today there is an interruption that requires you to hunt your way through a very dodgy part of Trenton. It would be even more fun to do the entire run from Frenchtown to New Brunswick, pulling off the path occasionally to sample fine yeasty beverages (such as at the Canal Side Bar in Lambertville, or any number of places between Princeton and New Brunswick). Let's hope they get it done by spring.
Perhaps it is a good expenditure in the densely populated East. Out here they have spent similar sums on bike trails and then only a microscopic percentage of the population uses them. In this region it looks like a waste of taxpayer money.
Well, Leading, I saw no reference to federal money.
@Mindles, of course I agree with you, but I doubt that New Jersey's "system" of public works could handle it. After all, private donors would not tolerate the required number of "no work" jobs.
Do we have rules of the road yet? Who will be able to use the trail? We got bicycles, runners, walkers, baby carriages, roller skaters, skate boarders, powered all-of-the-above, and those two wheeled machines that balance. And, dogs, how about those folks with the big, nasty dogs who don't clean up after the pets?
Closing the gap is fine, but they have let the condition of the rest of the trail deteriorate over the past few years. That could be fixed for not much money.
A few years ago the trail was cleaned up after Gov. Whitman broke her ankle on it. Since no governor has been injured lately it hasn't been maintained.
The D&R tow path is a beautiful public resource that is used and enjoyed by lots of people.
The Tigerhawk Tour de New Jersey! I know someone who could make the T-Shirts!
Mindeles is correct, however, I am glad that Thomas Jefferson bought the Louisiana Purchase for 5 cents an acre. And in the long run the Panama canal was a good deal for the US, and the world. Green design decades ahead of it's time! Politicians, for some reason, seem to be driven by some need to spend other peoples money. It would be better if they could stop. It would be worse if the spent is all. I guess sometimes the middle ground is to let them spend moderate amounts of it on really great things.
On the other hand, $400,000 is not a kings ransom, especially in today's world. Perhaps a way could be found to get the funds from some other source. Big Bicycle comes to mind. Maybe a Chinese bicycle company could be convinced to donate most of the cash as a way "giving back" to the bicycling community.
I bet it is as useful as the path from Trenton to Lambertville...which allowed the criminal element to access the $$$ up in Lambertville.....do not ride that path below Rt. 95.........you will take your life into your hands.
And the reference to "Capital Improvement" funds means that Federal dollars that could be used to FIX ROADS and BRIDGES is being used for a frickin bike path.