The good folks at the Train Trust of Santa Cruz County recently posted their “Top Ten Reasons to Build the Rail Trail”. Obviously, we created our own list of reasons not to build the proposed rail-with-trail.
Quick side note, the Train Trust continues to use the ambiguous term “rail trail” and includes a photograph in their post looking directly down the center of the corridor. Time for a reality check. The proposed trail would be built adjacent to the tracks (properly referenced as a rail-with-trail) and would decimate the environment within the corridor. We thought their mission statement was to protect and care for our extraordinary lands?
We digress. Without further ado, here are the top ten reasons not to build the proposed rail-with-trail:
1. Doubles the cost compared to building a trail down the middle of the corridor
2. Requires 22 new bridges; including two freeway crossings
3. Includes miles of retaining wall
4. Removes thousands of trees and plants
5. Installs a fence running the entire length of our county
6. No separation between bicyclists and pedestrians
7. Not 100% funded; new taxes and grants needed
8. Circumvents existing UCIS study for best use of corridor
9. Will include unsafe surface street reroutes
10. There will never be a train