Tuesday, January 21, 2014

MontCo to Close Segment of Schuylkill River Trail in Norristown

A half mile of the Schuylkill River Trail in Norristown will be closed for two or three months beginning next week. We received a press release (see below) announcing the closure, which is due to the Lafayette Street extension construction project. The closure runs from Ford Street to Ross Street in Norristown.
The red line is the section of SRT that will be closed starting January 27th.
Montgomery County officials told us that liability concerns are preventing them from establishing a detour route. This is disappointing, and we provided them with the following recommendations:
1) Install "Bicycles May Use Full Lane" signs on Main Street, to make motorists aware of bicyclists using the road.
2) Put a map of of the closure and adjoining roads on the signs that will be posted at both ends of the closure to allow bicyclists to know where they can get back on the trail.
3) Place a phone number or email address on the sign for bicyclists and pedestrians to report incidents. 
Thus far, we have not heard yet if and how Montgomery County will agree to our recommendations. In the meantime, you can post comments on our Biking the Suburbs Facebook group page.

UPDATE: January 22, 2014

Montgomery County is considering BCGP's suggestions.  Monday's holiday and snow days have slowed down the response, but we have been assured that they will get back to us shortly. 

Short segment of Schuylkill River Trail to close temporarily on January 27

Norristown, PA (January 21, 2013) – A half-mile segment of the Schuylkill River Trail will be closed temporarily to all traffic beginning on January 27. The closure is expected to last until spring.

The closure of the trail from Ford Street to Ross Street in Norristown is due to necessary construction that needs to be done as part of the Lafayette Street extension project. The trail had temporarily been relocated after construction began last year, but the scope of the work no longer makes keeping that open feasible or safe.

The closure of the trail will expedite the construction in that area and allow the permanent trail to be re-opened as soon as possible.

For updates on the trail closure, and for updates on the Lafayette Street project, please go to these web links:

Trail Alerts: http://www.montcopa.org/index.aspx?nid=1360

Lafayette Street Extension Project: http://montcopa.org/lafayettestreetproject


Unknown said...

So I guess they think it's safer for cyclists to travel on Main St? All they are doing is shifting the liability to someone else. If I get hit by a car on Main St, it is my problem not theirs. Very disappointing...

JoshHan said...

Once again, cyclists are treated as second class citizens. Can you imagine road construction on a street that's closed to traffic with no detour signage?

They did this before when a utility company was doing work on the SRT closer to Manayunk. No detour signage, just a trail closed sign.

Howard Hochheiser said...

Who can I contact to put in writing Bicycle Club of Philadelphia's support of your suggestions (signage, etc.)

Sarah Clark Stuart said...

The Couny contact is Frank Custer fcuster@montcopa@org

Unknown said...

They're serious about this closure. I caught a glimpse of the trail from the train at Ford Street this morning, and it's completely blocked off with 6 foot high chain-link fence.

Planet said...

Really? You're getting worked up over a midwinter, 2-3 month, half mile detour? Sounds like the proverbial first world problem here.