New Paltz, NY (June 15th, 2017)— Following a wet spring which slowed progress, construction on the Open Space Institute’s (OSI’s) River-to-Ridge Trail is continuing. The six-mile loop trail will connect the Village of New Paltz to the Mohonk Preserve and the Shawangunk Ridge. Over the next few weeks, OSI will be completing the new trail along the Wallkill River from the Carmine Liberta Bridge to Springtown Road.
This week, OSI installed the largest piece of infrastructure associated with the trail, a large concrete box culvert (measuring 15’ wide and weighing an estimated 70,000 lbs.) on the west side of the Wallkill River (photos of construction here). This culvert is built to withstand flooding while safely carrying the trail over the floodway channel. The construction work is being completed by PE Colucci Excavating from Gardiner, NY.
“OSI is grateful to finally be able to make progress toward completing this trail which will permanently protect and showcase this irreplaceable scenic, agricultural, and recreational landscape. Thank you to Mohonk Preserve, the Village of New Paltz, the Town of New Paltz, Ulster County, and the surrounding community for their continuing enthusiasm and patience for the trail.” said Kim Elliman, president and CEO of the Open Space Institute.
Work on the trail and parking area off Springtown Road will continue with the hope of opening at least a portion of the trail to the public this summer. As the project progresses, the public is reminded that the site is an active construction area and is respectfully asked to stay clear of construction equipment and project areas.
Once completed, the River-to-Ridge Trail will allow hikers, cyclists and others to enjoy wide paths meandering through farm fields and over gently rolling hills. The trail will also enable walkers and cyclists to safely bypass Route 299, currently the primary road leading from New Paltz to the preserves, and will connect the Wallkill Valley Rail Trail to over 90 miles of recreational carriage roads and trails at Mohonk Preserve and Minnewaska State Park Preserve.