Environmental Analysis Complete for Spruce Railroad Trail Improvements
Eight-Foot Asphalt Trail with Three-Foot Gravel Shoulder is Selected Alternative
The 2012 Spruce Railroad Trail Environmental Assessment (SRRT EA) has been completed and a Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) was released today.The selected alternative (Alternative 5) calls for improving the Spruce Railroad Trail for universal accessibility by building an eight-foot wide asphalt trail with an adjacent three-foot wide gravel shoulder.This project is part of President Obama's America's Great Outdoors Initiative.
"One of the primary goals of the America's Great Outdoors initiative is to work with communities to reconnect people with nature and strengthen our local economics through outdoor recreation and tourism," said Olympic National Park Acting Superintendent Todd Suess."This project illustrates the value of public and community collaboration, as important issues and concerns have been raised throughout the process and have helped shape the final decision."
The selected alternative will establish the entire 3.5 mile length of the SRRT as a universally accessible, multipurpose trail to be shared by hikers, bicyclists, equestrians and people traveling in wheelchairs.Overall, the trail will be 11 feet wide, with eight feet of asphalt and a three-foot unpaved shoulder to accommodate equestrians and other trail users who prefer to travel on an unpaved surface.Both of the historic railroad tunnels will be reopened as part of the trail.A new segment of trail will be built near Lyre River in order to bypass and mitigate the existing steep grades in that area.
The complete SRRT EA FONSI is available for public review and download at http://tinyurl.com/SRRT-Olympic.Hard copies are available upon request by calling the park at 360-565-3004.
"We look forward to the next steps in establishing an accessible, multipurpose trail in the beautiful Lake Crescent area, while still protecting the unique and nationally significant historic and natural values of Lake Crescent and the Spruce Railroad," stated Suess.
Construction is dependent on available funding; no timeline has been established yet.
President Obama launched the America's Great Outdoors Initiative to develop a conservation and recreation agenda built for the 21st century. As part of the Initiative, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar highlighted projects in every state that