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The Chappaqua Bike/Walkway

(The ChapLine)
Creating a New Functional Outdoor
Amenity for the New Castle Community
New Castle Residents Agree on
Certain Community Improvement Goals
From the New Castle Master Planning Public Engagement Report (July 2014):
Participants overwhelmingly expressed an interest in establishing a complete streets
policy that improves the Town of New Castles streets to facilitate multiple modes of
travel. In particular, participants want to enhance the pedestrian experience by
creating more sidewalks throughout Town, install better bicycle lanes and bicycle
parking infrastructure, and install traffic calming measures to improve safety for
pedestrians and cyclists. Further, participants want to improve sidewalk, trail, and
bicycle path connections, particularly in downtown where added crosswalks and
sidewalk connectivity would improve walkability.

A key component of the solution: The ChapLine
New Castle Residents Agree on
Certain Community Improvement Goals
Whats Not Working as expressed in the New Castle Master Planning Public
Engagement Report (July 2014):
Poor pedestrian experience (vehicle traffic, unsafe, not enough sidewalks)
Need more diversity of public recreational spaces for families and residents of all ages
Need better access to open space, especially in Town Center and downtown
Streets unsafe for cyclists (vehicle traffic, not enough bike trails/paths)
Would like to use car less
What Should be Done as expressed in the Report:
Create a network of bicycle/walking paths and trails connecting community
destinations to reduce vehicle usage (downtown, train station, along rail road tracks,
Greely High School, King Street)

A key component of the solution: The ChapLine
The Connection Path from
Greeley to the Primary Trail
The Existing
There is an existing pathway
extending between
Downtown Chappaqua and
Chappaqua Crossing
with a connection to
Horace Greeley High School
The ChapLine Already Exists!
The existing pathway between
Downtown Chappaqua and
Chappaqua Crossing with a
connection to Greeley
The Existing Trail
The ChapLine As It Is Today
* Pictures taken October 5
Distances between Roaring Brook Road and Downtown
National Trend Towards New Recreational Pathways
Based on Proven
Community Benefits
Trails make communities more attractive places to live
When considering where to move, homebuyers rank walking and biking paths as one of the
most important features of a new community
Trails increase the value of nearby properties
Trails boost spending at local businesses
Trails encourage exercise and other healthy outdoor activities and reduce medical costs
Trails influence business location and relocation decisions
Trails revitalize depressed spaces, creating demand in existing vacant lots and buildings
Trails provide transportation options and cut fuel expenses, offering reliable means of
transportation for short distance trips
Trails provide low or no-cost recreation to families with low costs relative to other
recreational services that could be provided by local governments
Trails increase tax revenues in the communities in which they are located
* See various studies and reports:
Specific Benefits of the ChapLine
to the New Castle Community
Additional healthy and safe recreation space for our local community
New Castle becomes a more walkable and bike-friendly town with improved safety
Current lack of sidewalks and our busy, narrow roads are dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists
Links core community spaces of Chappaqua, mutually enhancing each of the areas:

More Greeley students could safely walk or bike to/from school, reducing school traffic
Less Greeley students would drive off-campus during school day as they could walk or
bike into town for lunch and snacks
Many residents could perform daily shopping needs on foot/bicycle as hundreds of
homes are a short distance to access points
Would provide easy access to downtown to any new residents at apartments to be built
at Chappaqua Crossing
Horace Greeley
High School
Additional Benefits of the ChapLine
to the New Castle Community
Enhances Chappaquas merchants by providing additional access and incentive to visit
town and its retail shops and restaurants
New Castle has very limited additional property available that could be converted to
recreational use
New recreation spaces increase residential property values
Potential to reduce vehicular traffic and ease parking in the hamlet
Allows for new community event space as well as outdoor art exhibits of local residents
and students
It already exists!

History and Current Condition of the ChapLine Path
This pathway was once recommended as a new road According to the Chappaqua
Business Area Plan 1969:
Because of the need to improve north-south access directly into the Chappaqua
business area, the extension of North Greeley Avenue through to Roaring Brook Road is
recommended. In addition to greatly improving access to the business area and the
commuter railroad station, such a road would serve to greatly improve access to the
High School, and could relieve some of the existing traffic
This pathway was graded and a dirt roadway was fully developed extending the entire
length, with a connection to the High School, sometime between 2004 and 2007*
The road work was likely completed to allow truck access as part of a sewer line
installation along the route
Since the pathway was built, regrowth has occurred to varying degrees, however the
northern ~80% remains in very good shape and is very usable today
It looks like this section gets used by certain locals currently as a way to Horace Greeley
* Based upon historical aerial images:
History and Current Condition of the ChapLine Path
A small portion of the southern section has experienced more excessive re-growth, likely
as a result of less usage over the years and partial wetland condition
There is a ravine near the northern end of the path where installation of a pedestrian
bridge would be required to complete the full pathway
Current view of the ravine with the sewer line:
(Anyone know
how a golf cart
got here?)
Building the ChapLine
Much of the pathway is in excellent condition and can be simply and inexpensively
upgraded and paved
The path has already been cleared of trees, so extremely minimal tree removal or
ground excavation will be required
The majority of the path requires minimal sub-base work, grading, etc. to prepare for
surface paving
A minimal portion of the path has experienced meaningful regrowth of vegetation and
would require additional sub-base work and a wetland-compliant path design*
While best to develop the ChapLine all together, it could be built in phases:
Phase 1: A dirt/gravel path between Horace Greeley and downtown Chappaqua could be
opened quickly as a walking trail prior to a bridge installation
Phase 2: Paving of the initial section to allow for cycling between Horace Greeley and
downtown Chappaqua
Phase 3: Bridge installation to extend the ChapLine north to Readers Digest Road
* See USDA Forest Service guide on Wetland Trail Design and Construction:
Building the ChapLine Bridge (to Somewhere)
The Pedestrian Bridge completes the path from Downtown to Chappaqua Crossing
Prefabricated pedestrian bridges are best option
Cost effective
Quick/easy to install (weeks not months)
No maintenance required with certain materials like aluminum
Numerous attractive pre-fabricated bridge styles to choose from

From This to This
Other Sample Pre-Fab
Bridge Styles
Extremely Preliminary Cost Estimates
Upgrading and paving the current grass pathway (0.9 miles)
Various municipal and state reports on trailways estimate construction costs
Estimates range from $100-$130 per linear asphalt foot (including grading, clearing,
construction, a stabilizing subbase, etc.)
Additional 15-30% costs for engineering, design, inspection costs, etc.
Very Rough Estimate for the 0.9 miles of path upgrade: $550k-800k
Pedestrian Bridge installation cost
Pre fabricated bridges (10-12 wide) cost approximately $900 - $1,300 per linear foot,
assuming a length of 100 feet and depending on which materials were chosen
Additional 15-30% for related costs assumed
Very Rough Estimate for the 100 foot pedestrian bridge installation: $100k-$170k
Painting dedicated walk/bicycle lane on North Greeley Ave through Chestnut Oaks
Condos (0.7 miles)
Very Rough Estimate: $10k-$20k

Extremely Preliminary Cost Estimates (continued)
Additional Miscellaneous Expenses
Costs to install certain fences and barriers
Costs for unknowns
Very Rough Estimate: $50k-$150k
Additional administrative, legal and bureaucratic expenses
Assume additional 20%? (This being New Castle, who knows!!!)
Very Rough Estimate: $150k-$250k
Total Very Rough Cost Estimate: $850k-$1,400k
The Path Forward (pun intended)
Step #1: Feasibility Study, Initial Planning Report and Cost Analysis
Engage experienced firm to consult on the overall project feasibility and process
Potential first-call: Alta Planning + Design the leading firm for such projects
More bicycle, greenway and trail projects than any other firm in North America, having
developed trails from the Pacific Northwest to the Everglades, from the Delaware River to
the LA River, and from Grand Canyon to Grand Teton
Past clients include all levels of government agencies, nonprofits and private entities
Works with communities across the complete spectrum of path development:
Complete trail master planning: visioning, alternatives analysis, and project design
Develops environmental documentation, property acquisition strategies, accurate cost
estimates, maintenance plans, and management plans
Assists with easements, permits and funding strategies
Offers construction document development and construction administration
* Alta Planning + Design:
The Path Forward (pun intended)
Step #2: Obtain Easements
Other than the Town of New Castle and the Central School District, the ChapLine would
require easements across only six private residences
There would be limited impact to the home owners as the easement would be through
the unmaintained, forested areas of their properties, located downhill from their
residences (as seen in next slide)
These property owners would receive several benefits from the ChapLine
Studies found that, in general, direct access to recreational paths and parks increases
property values
Allows the owners/renters and their families to walk/bike to town, Chappaqua
Crossing, Greeley High School and Bell Middle School without cars
Thousands of similar bike/walk paths have been built nationwide with property owners
providing easements for their own benefit and that of the broader community
The Path Forward (pun intended)
Step #2: Obtain Easements (continued)
Limited impact to home owners as the easement would be downhill from the houses and
through the unmaintained, forested areas of their properties, as seen in the property

Land owned by
Town of New Castle
The Path Forward (pun intended)
Step #3: Perform Necessary Environmental, Land and Engineering Reviews and Obtain
Required Permits
Step #4: Funding
Encourage sponsorship from local corporations, non-profits, property owners and
merchants (including Summit Greenfield)
Given the significant benefits to the town, the Chappaqua community would likely step-
up to help fund and support the cost of pathway creation and maintenance
Donors could receive names on stones, bricks, benches along a section of the path
More substantial donors could receive recognition for segments of the ChapLine
i.e., This section funded by the ______ Family
Separate naming rights available for the ChapLine Bridge to be installed
Other grass-roots fundraising initiatives and events
Step #5: Build the ChapLine (see earlier slides on this process)
Step #6: Enjoy the ChapLine!