Monday, July 09, 2012

I want a trail! And I want it now!

I sure hope that all the players come together soon. You probably couldn't find a person out there that is publicly opposed to having a accessible bicycle/hiker trail around Humboldt Bay. Is it just the semantics of what rail-banking is holding this up? Can't reasonable dialogue come into play. Personally I think a trail from Samoa to Arcata should be the highest priority as I have witnessed that corridor being used by bicyclist's as a main mode of transportation for people on the Peninsula. Heck, clear a spot off to the side so there can be an excursion train between Samoa and Arcata also. Does it really need to be made so political and polarizing? A safe trail between Eureka and Arcata would probably increase usage by five fold! Just let this happen before I die and I will be one happy user!  

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

At $4 million, I'm opposed. Build a trail someplace that doesn't stink to high heaven at low tide.

If you've worked in a visitor center near Humboldt Bay, you've surely had tourists come in talking (as if in shock) at how ugly the bay is. A couple times, I felt like I was being exposed to their rant because they expected me to apologize for nature.

samoasoftball said...

I have walked many times at Arcata Marsh and have not been overwhelmed by the stench of the bay. Robin and I have probably walked hundreds of miles along the bay and it smeels no different than any other bay. $4 million would be well worth the investment just in safety issues.

Anonymous said...

The NCRA is going to fight this one to the death...

Joel Mielke said...

Yeah, Anonymous, who wants to see Old Faithful, and the rest of Yellowstonel? It smells like sulphur. Ewww!

And yes, as the second Anonymous suggests, the NCRA and the members of Timber Heritage will sink this idea if they possibly can.

Anonymous said...

nrca is fine with rails AND trails, already on paper. Timber heritage has the final touches on rheir passenger cars and they will have the train from samoa to eureka, with expansion tol loleta planned. Trails folk need to get DFG to allow use of levees so rail AND trail can work. this is a political proposal meant to try and beat the train out.

Capdiamont said...

What happened to my comment?

Capdiamont said...

There is many issues here.

The rail to trail from Arcata to Blue Lake has yet to turn a shovel.
The rail with trail within Arcata and to Bracutt has yet to turn a shovel. Both were submitted to NCRA board and approved long ago. There has been no plan for a trail from Bracutt to Eureka that was brought to the NCRA board for a vote. With no plan submitted, it cannot be approved. NCRA is not the bad guy here. There are proper ways to do things. The trail folks have not done so.

The four million mentioned in the plan is not the true cost of converting the rail to trail. There is an unbroken string of federal court cases stating rails to rails/rail banking is an unconstitutional taking of land. So in each court case, the government had to pay fair market value of the land for a new trail easement as though the railroad was never there, plus interest. Those costs have not been added to the 2007 plan. Link: http://www.mainjustice.com/2012/02/17/railbanking-flopping-in-the-courtroom/

The prism of the railroad is not a levee. It was not designed to hold back any water, and it will not do so. It was only designed to hold up the trains. There has been no costs added to the 2007 plan to make it a levee. Again those are added costs, and time to do so.

The short run for the tourist train from Samoa to Arcata is too short for the proposed Dinner train. It will also leave out the packed Fourth of July passenger train runs between Arcata and Eureka. Those runs brought our communities together with alternative transportation.

The East side of highway 101 might be a better place. I know you have to cross Indianola, various businesses, etc. However you open yourself up to whole new possibilities. It would then be cheaper to add in the old railroad right of ways to Bayside, Old Hansen Rd area, Freshwater, and the north side of Eureka. Indianola was a Railroad right of way. This way you have the main connecting trail, plus more to get people off of old Arcata Road. It allow for better access to the the wildlife refuge. It is more protected from the wind coming off the bay.

Rail banking is unneeded. The operator filed a notice of intent to use the railroad, and that alone preserves the right of way from reverting to private hands. The public was told the railroad has not been used for fifteen years. That is incorrect. There has been the movement of the railroad passenger car, and various groups of speeders. All that usage qualifies as railroad usage, preserving the right of way.

Now there is proposed usage of the railroad as a shortline in the intern, with eventual connection to the outside. With the proposed usage, the Surface Transportation Board will not the abandoning of the railroad. Rail banking requires abandonment of the railroad. Thus no rail banking will be allowed, even if the NCRA wanted to do so.

Anonymous said...

I'm sure it doesn't stink to you and Robin, same as the odor of manure doesn't smell to the locals of ferndale.

As far as walked hundreds of miles and it smells like any other bay,how many other bays have you walked hundreds of miles around Richard?

samoasoftball said...

8:49am-I have not walked "Hundreds" of miles around other bays, but many miles around most bays on the west coast, California, Oregon and Washington.

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