Patriots Path

Reminder: Board of Supervisors Meeting Tonight . . . St. Davids Golf Club on the Agenda, Public Hearing Continuance for Patriots Path Plan

Reminder:

Tonight is Tredyffrin Township Board of Supervisors Meeting, 7:30 PM at the Township Building, Keene Hall.  The St. Davids Golf Club issue is on tonight’s agenda.  I am looking forward to the continuing, thoughtful discussion from the residents  and to an appropriate resolution of this matter. If you are unable to attend the meeting, it will be shown on cable TV.  Check township website for details, www.tredyffrin.org

Following the regular BOS meeting, there will be a continuance of a Public Hearing for the ” . . .  consideration and possible adoption, via resolution, of the ‘Patriots Path Plan’, as an amendment to Tredyffrin Township’s Comprehensive Plan”.

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All in a Name . . . Patriots Path Plan

Following tonight’s Board of Supervisor Meeting will be a Public Hearing for the Patriots Path.  The Patriot Path Plan is a proposed trail network which will connect historic American Revolutionary War sites within East Whiteland, Malvern Borough and Tredyffrin Township via the Chester Valley trail system. The path would connect East Whiteland’s Battle of the Clouds Park, Malvern Borough’s Paoli Memorial Grounds and adjacent Paoli Battlefield, which was the site of the infamous Paoli Massacre, and Valley Forge National Historical Park.

The Board of Supervisors adopted the Tredyffrin Township Park, Recreation and Open Space Plan (PROS) in 2005.  The PROS plan was included in the township’s 2009 Comprehensive Plan. The primary benefit of incorporating the Patriots Path Plan in the Comprehensive Plan is for help with future funding opportunities.  As part of the multi-municipal effort, the Patriots Path funding opportunities could be increased.  That said, tonight’s discussion does not imply a commitment to build the trail, nor impose any timeline on further action.

The purpose of the public hearing will be to consider the adoption of the Patriots Path Plan as part of the Tredyffrin’s Comprehensive Plan. There are two segments of the Patriots Path that are located within Tredyffrin Township:

  • Valley Forge Segment: 1.8 mi. connection from the Chester County Trail to Valley Forge National Historic Park through Tredyffrin Township
  • Cedar Hollow Segment: 1.8 connection from Chester County Trail to Cedar Hollow Preserve and Cool Valley preserve via the Warner Spur Trail and then extending an additional mile to East Whiteland to connect to the Valley Creek Segment.

There is concern among some of my Great Valley neighbors over the proposed Patriots Path and the proximity of the path to their properties.  Tonight’s discussion should be useful for members of the community who are ‘for and against’ the proposed path. Sometimes misunderstanding of the facts can be at the root of the problem; tonight’s information session should help both sides with any misinformation. 

For many of us, we will recall the years that some Radnor Township residents spent in argument over the 2.2 mi P&W Radnor Trail.  There were resident that lived next to the abandoned railroad tracks that were very much opposed to it and the trail debate lasted decades (lawsuits, gag orders, etc) and became a major political issue. The Radnor Trail finally became a reality and many of the resident’s earlier fears have not materialized.  In fact, I’m thinking that many of the neighbors probably use the Radnor Trail themselves and the trail certainly stands as a success story and attribute to the Radnor community.

The success of Radnor Trail aside, we need to look at the Patriots Path Plan and make sure that concerns/questions of Great Valley residents can be answered by the township staff and the Supervisors.  Good open discussion is always helpful — here’s hoping that tonight’s public hearing will provide that kind of forum.

I thought it might be useful to give some links to those of you who like to read further about the proposed Patriots Path Plan.  Tim Lander, member of the Open Land Conservancy and also on the Sidewalks, Trails and Path Committee offered helpful information, including articles concerning the Radnor Trail and providing a vintage photo (below) of the trestle bridge over Valley Creek.  I encourage people to attend the Public Hearing tonight and if interested, review the following documents:

former trestle across Valley Creek, with nothing but farmland in sight (foreground is now the OLC Cool Valley Preserve);
The former trestle bridge across Valley Creek in the Great Valley, with nothing but farmland in sight (foreground is now the Open Land Conservancy’s Cool Valley Preserve);
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Board of Supervisor Meeting & Public Hearing on the Patriot's Path Tonight

Tonight is the first Board of Supervisors Meeting for 2010, 7:30 PM, Keene Hall, Township Building.  Here is the agenda for tonight’s meeting.  Following the Board of Supervisor Meeting, there will be a Public Hearing for the Patriot’s Path.  Later today I will be posting some background information on the Patriot’s Path.

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Patriots Path Discussion Set for January 4

The first meeting of the Board of Supervisors on January 4, 2010 could be challenging; on the agenda will be the Patriots Path.  The township Planning Commission unanimously approved the draft plan and is recommending to the Board of Supervisors the inclusion of the Patriots Path in to the Comprehensive Plan. The path has been 7 years in the making and will connect 3 municipalities that share Revolutionary War history; East Whiteland, Malvern and Tredyffrin. The path would connect East Whiteland’s Battle of the Clouds Park, Malvern Borough’s Paoli Memorial Grounds and adjacent Paoli Battlefield, which was the site of the infamous Paoli Massacre, and Valley Forge National Historical Park

The Great Valley Association has formed a sub-committee to look at the pros and cons from the residents standpoint.  I myself live in the Great Valley in a pre-Revolutionary House and I can see both sides of the argument.  I have neighbors who are concerned about this path (and the potential of strangers) close to their properties.  But on the other hand, I think that the concept of the Chester Valley Trail system is wonderful.  The Radnor Trail originally met with much opposition and has turned out to be highly valued in that community; the hope is that the Patriots Path can enjoy that same degree of success in the Great Valley.  I know that the Sidewalks, Trails and Path Committee (STAP) have worked very hard on these plans and I want all the residents to full understand the benefits.  Involving the Great Valley residents in the process and implementation can only help with the success of the project.

To read further about the Patriots Path, please look at STAP’s link.

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