Capitol Region Council of Governments to Receive Over $16 Million from the U.S. Department of Transportation
For Multi-use Trails in New Britain and Plainville
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 12, 2022
Hartford – The Capitol Region Council of Governments (CRCOG) is pleased to announce that the U.S. Department of Transportation is awarding CRCOG more than $16 million for the CT Trail Connections: Building a Network of Trails to Connect People to Jobs project in the City of New Britain and Town of Plainville. CRCOG will use the federal funding, along with $13.2 million of state funds, and a $600,000 commitment of Community Connectivity through CTDOT, to construct the final gap in the Farmington Canal Heritage Trail (FCHT) in Plainville and to construct a new trail connecting the FCHT through Plainville and New Britain to the CTfastrak trail at the Downtown New Britain station. The total federal RAISE grant award is $16,366,554, which will be applied towards an estimated total cost of $30,166,554.
CRCOG has been working to transform the region’s multi-use trail system into a linked network connecting urban, suburban, and rural communities. This CT Trail Connections Project weaves these efforts together by closing gaps in the existing trail network, providing multi-modal connections between residences, businesses, and destinations, and serving to foster last-mile bicycle and pedestrian connections for the existing transit system, including CTfastrak. Additionally, completion of the FCHT would serve to close one of the region’s last two major remaining off-road gaps in the East Coast Greenway, a 3,000-mile trail from Maine to Florida.
The proposed project augments recent area transit investments, as well as the millions of dollars of development that have occurred since CTfastrak began service. The project will also enhance the significant investments in transportation and place-making infrastructure in New Britain, which has aggressively implemented a multi-phase Complete Streets Plan. Three phases of this plan are already completed, with a fourth scheduled for completion this year. This ambitious plan includes road diets, bike lanes, expansion of the city’s central park, streetscape improvements, intersection improvements, and a signature bridge project called the Beehive Bridge.
“Now more than ever people are prioritizing outdoor recreation and environmentally friendly modes of transportation,” said Mayor Erin E. Stewart. “This trail connectivity project will enhance opportunities for people to enjoy nature, explore local landmarks, and travel between neighboring communities.”
“We’re thrilled to receive this significant grant to complete the remaining gaps in the Farmington Canal Heritage Trail in our region, with additional connections to the CTfastrak Trail. Thank you to U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT), U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Congresswoman Jahana Hayes (CT-05), CTDOT Commissioner Joseph Giulietti, FHWA Administrator Amy Jackson-Grove, New Britain Mayor Erin E. Stewart, and Plainville Council Chair Katherine Pugliese for their collective leadership and support for this major project,” CRCOG’s Executive Director Matt Hart said. “Congratulations to our amazing CRCOG team, led by Director of Planning Rob Aloise, for their excellent work on this grant application.”