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Linglestown Gazette: Editorial: Greenway trails won’t be crime magnets

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Editorial: Greenway trails won’t be crime magnets

A Gazette reader submitted the following question about the Greenway Plan that Lower Paxton Township supervisors approved last week:

Are they planning on placing any trails through private property? I know a few years ago there was a plan to put a biking/walking path through the middle of my back yard and my neighbor's yard.

The locations of trails are unknown at this time. The lines shown in the Greenway Plan are not set in stone. The township park & recreation department would need to obtain the cooperation of homeowners to build a trail through back yards. Township officials have vowed not to take property via eminent domain for this project.

The proposed trails aim to make it possible to walk from neighborhoods to public parks, public schools and other neighborhoods. Most people using the trails would be the same people who drive and walk in neighborhoods throughout the township now.

As an example, as things are now, there's no way I'm going to walk along Route 39 from the village of Linglestown to CD High School. But I would make the hike if the proposed off-road trail through the fields east of the village to the high school becomes a reality.

It's almost guaranteed that a significant number of people will protest having a trail near their home. “The Greenway Plan is a great idea, but having a trail near my home scares the bejezus out of me,” they’ll say.

But, consider this: Public streets and sidewalks, if you’re lucky enough to have sidewalks in your neighborhood, are in fact trails that border residential properties. They give good and not so good people easy access to homes.

Again, the goal of the Greenway Plan is to enhance pedestrian and bicycle transportation and recreational opportunities for township residents, which is a good thing for staying healthy, reducing gasoline purchases and protecting the environment. Scads of township residents using the NIMBY (not in my back yard) argument will ensure that the $25,000 spent on the Greenway Plan was a waste of taxpayer money.


At 8:55 PM, Blogger floor9 said...

I'm really looking forward to seeing this go through. As it stands now, the closest decent bike trails to my East Hanover home are on the Harrisburg Greenbelt. And while they're not bad, they're 25 minutes away. It would be nice to have well-maintained trails this close.


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