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iBerkshires.com Columnist Section

Sue Bush
More articles from Sue Bush

DCR Awards $50K Grant To Pittsfield

12:00AM / Thursday, March 08, 2007

Pittsfield – Mayor James M. Ruberto announced yesterday that the city has received a $50,000 grant from the state Department of Conservation and Recreation for a feasibility study to extend the Ashuwillticook bike trail into Pittsfield.

The grant was funded in the state’s Economic Stimulus bill through the efforts of State Representative Christopher Speranzo (D -Pittsfield) and other members of the Berkshire delegation. The money will be used to determine the most viable route from the trail end near the Berkshire Mall to the East Street Softball Complex. The scope of work includes survey work, evaluation of alternate routes, investigating permitting activities, soliciting public input, and more.

“This is an important step forward in understanding how we can bring the wonderful benefits of a bike path to the people of Pittsfield,” said Ruberto. “As the entire county is coming together to create a trail, connecting us all from Connecticut to Vermont, Pittsfield is a critical link.”

As the geographic and recreation hub of the Berkshires, the extension of the trail into Pittsfield is essential for the overall plan to build a full north-south Berkshire trail.

Ruberto commended the work of the bike path ad hoc committee, which includes several interested parties, representing neighborhood interests, bicycling enthusiasts, city officials, and others.

The City Council will be asked to accept the grant from the Department of Conservation and Recreation at its upcoming meeting on March 13.

A public input meeting is expected to be scheduled for April and will be widely advertised.



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