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Saratoga Springs moves forward with once controversial bike and walking trail

April 10, 2019 06:27 PM

SARATOGA SPRINGS - Molly Gagne was always optimistic this day would come. She and her neighbors in the city's Geyser Crest area have been pushing for a bike and walking trail for 15 years.

They argued Geyser Road with its industrial park and tractor trailers make biking and walking dangerous, effectively cutting off walkers and bikers from the rest of the city.

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"You see a mom pushing a stroller on Geyser Road with the traffic going by, you think this has to change," Gagne said.

And it has changed.

Saratoga Springs Mayor Meg Kelly announced Wednesday that all of the litigation and all of the eminent domain challenges to building the trail have been resolved.

"It's about sitting at the table, creating a relationship and working together to get things done," Kelly said.

The state is picking up the tab on the $3.5 million project, including $40,000 for property the city is acquiring through eminent domain.

The mayor says Jack Pompay, a Geyser Road homeowner who told NewsChannel 13 in 2017 that he wanted to keep the shrubs he'd worked so hard to grow, has now agreed to allow the city to move them and his in-ground sprinkler system.

City Supervisor Matt Veitch -- who lives along where the trail will be built, has also been pushing for a decade and a half.

"I didn't know if it was going to take this long, but I'm glad that the mayor and the City Council have all worked hard to get this where we're at now," he said Wednesday.

The mayor says the tree cutting should start later this month and the whole project should be done next year.

Molly Gagne can't wait.

"We're going to be able to walk to SPAC, we're going to be able to bike down to the state park or downtown," smiled Gagne. "A tremendous relief."

Credits

Mark Mulholland

Copyright 2019 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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