✓ A pedestrian and biking trail that runs 32 miles from Davenport to Watsonville.
✓ The trail is alongside the rail road tracks.
✓ The trail is a separate project from rail service.
✓ The rail corridor is owned by the Regional Transportation Commission (RTC).
✓ The plan is for a (at least) 12-foot paved trail, which is the width of a lane of freeway and wider than any paved trail in the county.
✓ After a 3 year public process, the RTC decided in 2013 to build the trail alongside the rail tracks – and to decide later about rail service.
✓ The County of Santa Cruz and the cities of Santa Cruz, Watsonville, and Capitola have adopted the Rail Trail Master Plan.
Being Built Now!
This trail is being built now --
✓ 1st segment open through Santa Cruz in 2018.
✓ The North Coast, Santa Cruz to 17th, Watsonville segments can be open within 3-4 years
✓ 13 miles – 40% of the trail – has $40M in funding for design, engineering and construction
✓ Virtually all of the 32-mile trail can be completed in ten years
Why Build It?
Because it is within a mile of –
✓ 92 parks (green on this map)
✓ 45 schools (purple on this map
✓ And half the county’s population (the shaded blue area)
Transform How We Get Around
Amsterdam, Davis, and many other cities have proven that building bike infrastructure leads to more biking. The Rail Trail is a big piece of infrastructure that will increase bike use and lead to more infrastructure improvement on feeder streets.
Even those who never ride on the trail will benefit as it will mean fewer vehicles on the roads.
One choice has already been chosen and is being built now – a Rail Trail alongside the rail tracks. It has a detailed master plan developed through a public process, government approval and funding. It is being built now and could be completed in 10 years.
The other choice is a trail only approach. It has gone through no public input, has not detailed plan, no government approval or funding. It will stop progress on building the trail and jeopardize existing funds. RTC staff conservatively calculate that it will take at least eight years to basically start over.
Why and How is the Land Trust Involved?
✓ The Land Trust is raising matching funds ($6M) for grants to Build ASAP.
✓ This commitment began in 2013 to provide matching funds for the North Coast segment – and now includes funding for the trail along the North Coast and in Watsonville, Santa Cruz, and Live Oak.
✓ The trail will connect people to trails we’re building at San Vicente Redwoods (through Contini-Coast Dairies National Monument) and on our Watsonville Slough Farm.
Measure D Compromise / Complication
Rail opponents threatened to kill Measure D unless it included study of “Trail Only” option. This study is now underway as part of the larger Unified Corridor Study, which looks at how to address the county’s north-south traffic problems.
Public input is being sought as part of this study. More information is available on the