If I have a caveat about the article, it would be that it might convey the impression that the Wilmington – New Castle Greenway is something that has recently been dreamt up. But just by taking a look at the long list of Bike Delaware articles going back to July of 2010 at the end of this post, you can see that’s not the case. And, in fact, the genesis of the project goes back a lot farther than 2010:
- Delaware Greenways has been a steady supporter of this project all the way back to the beginning.
- This project is part of the route of the East Coast Greenway, an inter-city trail linking the major cities of the east coast all the way from Calais, Maine to Key Coast, Florida. Like Delaware Greenways, the East Coast Greenway Alliance has been a long-term backer of this project.
- Phase I of the Wilmington – New Castle Greenway, which extends 2 miles from Rt 273 in New Castle to Rt 295, was built with federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funding. Both Senator Tom Carper and WILMAPCO played important roles in securing ARRA funding for Phase I.
- The Delaware Bicycle Council has backed this project since 2010.
- The Historic New Castle Alliance has been a steady supporter, as has
- the City of Wilmington;
- the Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau;
- the Riverfront Development Corporation;
- the Delaware Nature Society; and
- the American Heart Association.
- DNREC is a strong backer of this project, and has played a particularly creative role by helping to use a federal program to improve air quality to fund Phase III design and engineering.
- New Castle County, which built Phase II!
- DelDOT is the manager of the Wilmington – New Castle Greenway project. Secretary Bhatt participated in the ribbon cutting for Phase I of the greenway.
It’s understandable that some folks think it will be many years before a project this big and ambitious – a six mile greenway connecting the cities of Wilmington and New Castle and all the communities in between – is ever completed. I actually don’t think that’s true. I think we are going to make it all the way within the next 2 years. Why? Because we – Delaware Greenways, the East Coast Greenway Alliance, the Delaware Bicycle Council, Senator Carper, WILMAPCO, the Historic New Castle Alliance, the Greater Wilmington Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Delaware Nature Society, the Riverfront Development Corporation, the American Heart Association, DNREC, New Castle County and DelDOT, as well as many, many other Delawareans and Bike Delaware – are all joined together to make sure that it does.
James Wilson is the executive director of Bike Delaware.