August 22, 2013
Ribbon-cutting for Walkway on Shoreline Greenway Trail in Hammonasset Beach State Park, Madison
There’s a new attraction at Hammonasset Beach State Park – the Shoreline Greenway Trail.
After many years of hard work, the Shoreline Greenway Trail – a walkway over a marsh – is complete and Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) Commissioner Daniel C. Esty today joined members of the Shoreline Greenway Trail for a ribbon-cutting celebration at Hammonasset. When fully competed, the Trail will extend 25 miles from Madison to Lighthouse Point, New Haven.
The ribbon cutting was held in conjunction with the Summer Outdoor Journey (SoJourn), an 11-day 169-mile trek to help kick-off the year-long Connecticut State Parks Centennial. Connecticut’s State Parks trace their history to the formation of the State Park Commission in 1913 and to the purchase in 1914 of the first land for a state park – five acres in Westport for what was to become Sherwood Island State Park. Hammonasset Beach State Park opened in 1920, with a large beach, pavilions, and boardwalk that became popular and today is the most visited state park in Connecticut.
DEEP Commissioner Daniel C. Esty said, “Just as our SoJourners are enjoying the outdoors, The Shoreline Greenway Trail will encourage others to get outside by providing a safe, scenic off-road alternative for bicyclists, walkers and runners through Hammonasset Beach State Park. Today’s celebration of the “walkway” over a marsh, illustrates the importance of protecting Connecticut’s natural resources while at the same time providing a trail system that will link twenty-five miles from Madison to New Haven, connecting communities, neighborhoods, shopping areas and parks while boosting economic vitality all along the shoreline.”
Shoreline Greenway Trail Chair Chip Angle said, “We are deeply grateful to Hammonasset Park personnel, DEEP staff, every contributor, and the amazing team of volunteers who have come together to make this section of the trail possible. It is a major step forward for the Shoreline Greenway Trail.”
Major funders include:
- Recreational Trails Program
- Long Island Sound Grant
- Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield
- Community Foundation for Greater New Haven
- Dorr Foundation
- Madison Newcomers Club
- Madison Garden Club
- Madison Jaycees
- Guilford Savings Bank
- Designated individual gifts
Pro bono services:
- Mike Ott, engineer
- Barbara Yaeger, landscape architect
- Craig Talmadge, contouring and construction
- Seashore Construction
Plans call for the Shoreline Greenway Trail to run through meadows and woods along Long Island Sound from Lighthouse Point on New Haven Harbor for twenty-five miles to Hammonasset Beach State Park in Madison. The trail will provide recreational, transportation and educational opportunities for all Connecticut residents.
The Shoreline Greenway Trail, Inc., a non-profit organization with more than 2500 supporting members, has been fundraising, educating potential property owners and working on designing, building and maintaining this trail since 2003. The organization has forged successful partnerships with state and local agencies and municipalities along the route. Visit their website at wordpress.shorelinegreenwaytrail.org