Fundraising underway to complete next Rail Trail segment
LONDONDERRY — Members of the Londonderry Trailways group are actively raising money to complete the town’s portion of the Rail Trail.
On Tuesday, Trailways spokeswoman Pollyann Winslow said construction on the project’s second phase was underway. The paved recreational trail, which is being constructed on the site of the former Manchester-Lawrence railway corridor, has been in the works for the past several years.
Once completed, the 6.4-mile trail will connect the Derry and Windham rail trails to the south and the Manchester rail trail to the north.
Trailway officials opened the first completed mile of the Londonderry Rail Trail, which stretches from the North Elementary School parking lot to the Exit 5 Park & Ride, in late November.
“That first paved mile has been used extensively this spring and summer by walkers, runners and bicyclists,” Rail Trail committee member Sandra Lagueux said this week, “so we’re anxious to extend that trail.”
Winslow said the project’s second phase would extend the Londonderry Rail Trail by three-quarters of a mile, stretching from the Park & Ride to the Irving gas station on Route 28.
The trail will pass underneath Interstate 93 and run behind Poor Boy’s diner.
Londonderry Trailways recently contracted with Severino Trucking, the Candia-based company that’s working with the state Department of Transportation on the Exit 5 expansion, to grade and lay gravel on the local Rail Trail.
Winslow said she expects that portion of the project to be completed later this week.
“They’ve done a great job preparing the trail for paving and they stayed within our budget,” project manager Bob Rimol said this week.
Engineering plans for the new trail segment are in the works and Rimol said they hope to pave the Phase 2 section sometime this fall if funds permit.
Rimol said Londonderry Trailways would need to raise $17,000 to pave the trail segment.
For more information or to make donations, stop by the Londonderry Trailways booth at Old Home Day this Saturday, or go to londonderrytrails.org.