Northwestern Pacific Railroad Network

Dedicated to Sharing the Heritage of Redwood Empire Railroading

Steve Atnip alerted me to this article in the Press Democrat:

Published: Friday, December 7, 2012 at 6:50 p.m.
Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit officials are seeking $6.6 million in federal funds to buy more train cars, money that otherwise would be used for local pedestrian and bicycle paths.

“SMART is committed to go to Cloverdale and to Larkspur and as you go farther, you need more vehicles,” said Farhad Mansourian, SMART's general manager.

SMART's request is drawing fire from bicycle advocates because the rail agency would be taking the lion's share of $9.9 million that Sonoma County is getting for such projects as bike lanes, sidewalk improvements, traffic lights, Safe Routes to Schools programs and even construction of SMART's own pedestrian and bicycle path.

“It would mean that most jurisdictions would have to put off implementing most of their bike-pedestrian plans for five years, at least,” said Sandra Lupien, outreach director for the Sonoma County Bicycle Coalition.

The coalition has been a staunch supporter of SMART but is strongly opposing this bid.

“We don't understand how it makes sense for one train set to take two-thirds of the funding for the entire network,” Lupien said.

The Sonoma County Transportation Authority board, made up of representatives from the county's nine cities and the county Board of Supervisors, will make a decision Monday on SMART's request.

Four of the authority's 12 members also sit on the SMART board: County Supervisor Valerie Brown, Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Shirlee Zane, Rohnert Park Mayor Jake Mackenzie and Cloverdale Councilwoman Carol Russell.

Sonoma County has been allocated $9.9 million in federal money for congestion mitigation/air quality, meant primarily to fund pedestrian and bicycle projects.

Read the rest of the article here.

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Has anybody on this website have any knowledge of a railroad that is parralell to a bike path? Just does not seem very safe to me is all.

It really doesnt, and there are no plans for a fence between either. I've heard, or barly remember a Trains article of a small shortline somewhere in the north-east that was rails to trails'd, and then brought back next to the path. I'll look a little bit for the article.

Oh! J! That reminds me! The California State Railroad museum runs their excursion trains on tracks bisecting a pathway!: How could I forget that. 

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