Americans with Disabilities Act. Rail trails must meet
the requirements of ADA unless a special waiver is approved.
Asset Performance Management. Consultants to EOT concerning
management of their property. Perform deed research for rail-trail
properties. All requests for access to EOT-owned property
for clearing or construction are handled by APM who generates
draft agreements. The 2005 key APM contact with regard to
rail trails is Claire Connelly.
Assabet River Rail
Trail. This trail is under construction from Marlboro through
Hudson. The goal is to extend the trail through Stow and
Maynard to the rail station in South Acton along the old
Marlboro-South Acton rail line.
Bruce Freeman Rail
Trail. Sometimes called the Bruce N. Freeman Memorial Bicycle
Path. This proposed trail along the old Framingham & Lowell
Railroad bed would extend from Route 9 to Lowell. Development
of the trail is split into three phases with construction
of the Phase 1 from Lowell through Chelmsford and Westford
expected to be started in late 2006 or early 2007.
and Air Quality. This is one of two programs within ISTEA,
TEA-21 and the proposed follow-on programs that is a potential
source for rail-trail funding. CMAQ funding requires a 20%
combined state and local match. In Massachusetts, generally
the split is 10% state and 10% local. CMAQ trail projects
must provide a net reduction of VMT. The other source of
federal transportation funding for rail trails is the “Transportation
Enhancements” (no acronym). Under this latter source
of funding, the project must have a “functional” relationship
to surface transportation. Most rail trails are funded through
Act. This Commonwealth act allows a municipality to add an
increment to local property taxes that goes into a fund that
may be used for historical preservation, low-income housing
and open space that are currently matched 1:1 by the Commonwealth.
Trails are one of the approved uses under CPA. This is
a likely source of funding for the local portion of the cost
of rail trails in Sudbury Concord and Acton, communities
that have passed the CPA. The use of CPA funds must be approved
by the local CPC before going to Town Meeting for final approval.
Community Preservation Committee. This Town committee
must approve any use of CPA funds. CPC’s recommendations
go to Town meeting for final approval.
The acronym stands alone.
This is the railroad company that owns the rail bed of the
BFRT south of the MCRT. Phase 3 of the BFRT will be on this
section in Sudbury and Framingham.
Planning Staff. This state agency is part of the MPO and
carries out the initial feasibility studies for rail trails.
CTPS conducted the feasibility study for the Sudbury
to Lowell section of the BFRT in 1987. An update for the
Phase 2 section of the BFRT was done in 2003. A study of
the Phase 3 section was initiated in January 2005. CTPS conducted
the feasibility study for the Wayside Trail in 1987.
A key contact at CTPS is Cathy Buckley Lewis.
Division of Capital Asset Management. This state watchdog
agency must approve any lease or sale of state property.
The agency was set up a short time ago after some apparent
sweetheart deals between state official and private parties
were revealed. EOT must submit rail trail leases to DCAM
for approval. DCAM is the agent for selling state property.
Division of Conservation and Recreation. This division
combines the parks and trails activities of the former MDC
(Metropolitan District Commission) with the former DEM (Division
of Environmental Management). Danny O’Brien of DCR is an expert on rail trail development in Massachusetts. He assisted in the planning of Phase 1 of the BFRT. Among the rail trails managed by DCR are the Cape Cod, Nashua River, Norwottuck and Ashuwillticook rail trails.
Executive Office of Transportation. This is the state
umbrella agency for all transportation departments. The name
was recently modified by dropping the C (for “Construction” from
the former name EOTC). This agency owns the rail bed of the
BFRT from South Sudbury to Lowell. In 2006, Michael Gleba
is the EOT official in charge of EOT’s railroad property.
Josh Lehman is Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator at EOT.
Todd Fortanella coordinates access to EOT property and leases
for rail trails. Leases offered by EOT must be approved by
DCAM. Draft agreements are generated by APM.
Federal Highway Administration.
Rail trail projects seeking partial federal funding must
be coordinated through the local office of FHWA. As an important
matter of semantics, FHWA primarily funds “transportation” projects
(including things described as “bike paths” or “alternative
transportation corridors”), not “rail trails” or
Fay, Spofford and Thorndike.
This transportation engineering firm performed the engineering
study for the BFRT in Acton and Concord. In summer 2006, FST is working on the ”Sudbury Bruce Freeman Rail Trail Engineering and Environmental Assessment.” FST also designed the Nashua River Rail Trail, among other rail trails. FST did the redesign of the Cape Cod Rail Trail. Jen Shemowat and John Hendrickson are key contacts.
Efficiency Act sometimes referred to as “ice tea”.
This is the omnibus federal transportation bill passed in
about 1993 and covering a five-year period. This bill set
aside a fraction of the total budget for things other than
highways. Much of the funding for rail trails came out of
these funds. This bill was followed by TEA-21and the 2005 SAFETA-LU. Rail trail
funding comes out of the CMAQ, Enhancement or Recreational
Trails parts of ISTEA and the follow-on bills. Trails funding
also comes in relatively small grants administered through
DCR, and are usually for ancillary amenities, and not primary
design and construction costs.
Metropolitan Area Planning Council. This is the RPA
for Phases 2 and 3 of the BFRT. All proposed transportation
efforts (including rail trails) must be coordinated through
MAPC. They work as an intermediary between the local communities
and MHD. Scott Walker coordinates rail trail proposals at MAPC.
Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority. The MBTA
owns the rail bed of the Wayside Trail. Any real estate dealings
(including rail trail leases) are handled by TRA, the real
estate arm of the MBTA.
Massachusetts Central Rail Trail. This proposed east-west
rail trail runs from Boston to Northampton. The MBTA-owned
portion of this trail is referred to as the Wayside Rail
Trail. The MCRT crosses the BFRT in south Sudbury. This is
the boundary between phases 2 and 3 of the BFRT. The rail
bed south of the intersection is owned by CSX.
Massachusetts Highway Department. This department supervises
design, bidding and construction for rail trails. The BFRT
is in Massachusetts Highway District 4.
Metropolitan Planning Organization. After a rail trail
is approved through either the CMAQ or Enhancement program,
MPO programs the effort on the TIP. CTPS is part of MPO.
Josh Lehman is in charge of bicycle and pedestrian projects.
Project Review Committee. PRC consists of five district
directors and the Chief Engineer of MHD. Following CMAQ approval,
municipality and RPA work with MHD to receive PRC approval.
Following PRC approval, the MHD design process can begin.
Right of way. For a rail trail, this is the strip of
property containing the rail line owned by a railroad company
(e.g., CSX) or government agency (e.g. EOT). The strip is
typically forty to eighty feet wide.
Regional Planning Agency. The state is broken up into
13 RPA’s. The Northern Middlesex Area Council of Government
covers Phase 1 of the BFRT. The RPA for Phases 2 and 3 is
Rails-to-Trails Conservancy. National advocacy organization
promoting rail trail conversions, legislation, maintenance,
Rail Trail Conversion Advisory Committee. This Sudbury
committee has been established to advise the Selectmen concerning
rail trail projects.
Safe, Accountable, Flexible Transportation Equity Act-Legacy for Users. On August 10, 2005, the president signed the this new transportation bill. SAFETEA-LU authorizes the Federal surface transportation programs for highways, highway safety, and transit for the 5-year period 2005-2009. Support for rail trails is included in this act in much the same way as in the earlier ISTEA and TEA-21 acts.
Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century. This 1998 omnibus federal transportation bill covers a five-year period. Its predecessor was ISTEA. Funding for things like rail trails was extended to TEA-21. The bill was extended several times (into 2005) because Congress delayed passage of SAFETEA-LU.
Transportation Improvement Program. The appropriate
MPO generates this annually updated list of estimates over
6 years of when all federal transportation projects will
receive their funding. It functions something like a priority
list. Rail trail projects can go on the TIP at a very early
stage, well before approvals and design are in place.
Transit Realty Associates. Any MBTA real estate dealings
(including rail trail leases) are handled by TRA, the real
estate arm of the MBTA. Buzz Constable heads TRA.
Vehicle miles traveled. This is a measure of the potential
impact of a CMAQ-funded trail.