Anglers Towpath Repairs
C&O Canal National Historical Park News Release
Release Date: November 9, 2012, for Immediate Release
Contacts: John Noel, Public Information Officer, 301-714-2238, John_Noel@nps.gov
C&O Canal National Historical Park to Host Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at Anglers
POTOMAC, MD - On Saturday, November 17, 2012, at 1:00 p.m., the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park will host a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate the completed restoration of the breach at Anglers, just downstream of the Great Falls Tavern. Guest speakers will include National Park Service National Capital Regional Director Steve Whitesell and other local dignitaries.
Parking for the event is at the Great Falls Maryland Visitor Center parking lot at 11710 MacArthur Boulevard in Potomac, MD. Free shuttles will operate from 12:00 p.m. until 3:30 p.m. Guest speakers will begin at 1:00 p.m. and will be followed by a tour of the newly restored towpath lead by Park Superintendent Kevin D. Brandt and others. For more information and to RSVP, please visit http://www.CanalTrust.org/Anglers.
A 125-foot breach of the C&O Canal towpath occurred on September 6, 2008, at the popular stretch known as Anglers. The breach began on September 5, as a sinkhole, but with torrential rains and large scale runoff resulting from Tropical Storm Hannah; it quickly grew to a full scale breach.
Funding to repair the breach at Anglers resulted from three years of collaboration between park staff, elected officials, the C&O Canal Trust (the park's official non-profit partner), and the park community. A $100,000 donation by the C&O Canal Trust, on behalf of the community, made the project eligible for additional funding. The early donation expedited the geotechnical evaluations and surveying at the site and a design for sustainable repairs. This positioned the park to receive public funding for the construction.
With financial and verbal support of the community, repairs to the breach were funded in September 2011. Maryland's Transportation Enhancement Program accounted for $1.1 million of the total $3.3 million required for the repairs, and the additional $2.2 million came from the National Park Service Line Item Construction Program.
In repairing the breach, the park implemented a long-term sustainable solution to reduce major problems in an area where leaks had been an issue. A total of 69,454 square feet of PVC liner and 1,007 cubic yards of concrete were installed over 335 days (31 days ahead of schedule) to prevent future catastrophic failures.
The restoration of the historic towpath and re-watering of the canal, and thus the return of scenic views and recreational opportunities at Anglers, showcase the significant impact a community of supporters can have on the preservation and conservation of this national treasure in our backyard. The C&O Canal Trust and the C&O Canal National Historical Park wish to thank the community of donors and supporters who played a vital role in helping to make these repairs possible.
About Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park. Preserving America's colorful Canal era and transportation history, the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal National Historical Park is 184.5 of adventure. Originally, the C&O Canal was a lifeline for communities and businesses along the Potomac River as coal, lumber, grain and other agricultural products floated down the canal to market. Learn more at www.nps.gov/choh.
About the C&O Canal Trust. Founded in 2007, the C&O Canal Trust is an independent, nonprofit organization whose mission is to protect, restore, and promote the C&O Canal National Historical Park. As the official "friends" organization for the park, the Trust seeks to ensure that the C&O Canal's natural, historical, and recreational potential is fully realized. For more information regarding the Trust, please visit www.canaltrust.org.
Did You Know?
The Paw Paw Tunnel is 3,118 feet long and is lined with almost six million bricks. The 2/3 mile long tunnel saved the canal builders almost six miles of construction along the Paw Paw bends of the Potomac River. The project took twelve years to complete. The tunnel was only wide enough for single lane traffic.