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NEWS RELEASE



GOVERNOR O'MALLEY PROVIDES ADDITIONAL FUNDING FOR HIKER BIKER TRAIL IN TALBOT COUNTY

Takirra Winfield
Governor’s Office
Office:  410-974-2316
Cell:  443-336-1475 Sandra Dobson
State Highway Admin.
Office:   410-545-0303 Cell:  443-463-7129
 
GOVERNOR’S PRESS OFFICE
Governor O'Malley provides additional funding for hiker biker trail in Talbot County
New Easton Rail Spur Line Trail Connects Community Features
Baltimore, MD (August 3, 2012) – Demonstrating his commitment to expanding healthy and greener transportation options and recreational opportunities, Governor Martin O’Malley has approved an additional $826,500 in Federal Transportation Enhancement Program (TEP) funds for the Easton Rail Spur Line project in Talbot County. The trail will provide a vital link connecting local Easton communities to schools, parks, and the local YMCA.
“Trails not only strengthen and connect communities, they enhance the quality of life for those who walk and bike along them,” said Governor Martin O’Malley. “Constructing the Easton Rail Spur Line will provide opportunities for Maryland’s families, residents and visitors to explore and enjoy our great State’s natural and cultural treasures.”
The project will convert an abandoned railroad corridor to a hiker-biker trail connecting communities with recreational opportunities and complement ongoing bicycle tourism efforts.  The trail will extend 2.4 miles and connect to an existing bike trail along MD 33 (Saint Michaels Road.)  Crossing MD 322 (Easton Bypass), the trail will continue over the Tred Avon River and meander through an open space area within Easton Village.  
Earlier this week, Governor O’Malley also announced $41,000 in State funding for this trail project through a Maryland Bikeways Program grant.  The total cost of the project is             $1.65 million for trail design and construction, street crossing and storm water management. The paved trail will vary in width between six and eight feet and include a timber pedestrian bridge over the Tred Avon River.
 “We thank Governor O’Malley and the State of Maryland for their support to construct the Easton Rail Trail Spur Line Project,” said Town of Easton Mayor Robert C. Willey.  “We are looking forward to adding this trail to our system and continuing our efforts to promote bicycle access and tourism in Easton.”
The Easton Rail Spur Line Project is partially funded through the TEP Program, which invests in non-traditional, community-based transportation-related projects.  This year Maryland awarded six TEP projects totaling more than $4.1 million. The Governor determines which projects qualify for funding based on need and potential benefit to the public. The Maryland Department of Transportation’s State Highway Administration oversees the federal program, which has awarded more than $206 million for 270 projects in Maryland since the TEP program began in 1991. 
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