A ground breaking ceremony for Phase V of the Three Notch Trail will be held at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, June 29, at the John V. Baggett Park, located at 26929 Three Notch Road, Mechanicsville. All are invited to attend and celebrate the beginning of construction of this next section of trail.
Phase V will provide walkers and bicyclists a scenic three-mile section of trail through woodlands and open fields. This section will begin at Baggett Park and end near MD Route 5 at the Gospel Light Baptist Church. With ample parking and restrooms, Baggett Park will serve as a trail hub. When the entire 28 mile long trail is completed, it will link the more urban areas of Lexington Park and California to scenic, rural areas such as Hillville, Oakville, Laurel Grove, Mechanicsville and Charlotte Hall.
In addition to recreational and fitness uses, the trail is expected to serve transportation needs for those wishing to bike to attractions, shopping, parks, Senior Activity Centers, libraries, farmers’ markets, businesses and workplaces.
Other Phases of the trail already constructed or planned are as follows:
* Phase I: This one mile section of trail from MD 236 in New Market to the Northern Senior Activity Center in Charlotte Hall opened in June 2006.
* Phase II: This 2.25 mile section from the Northern Senior Activity Center to Deborah Drive in Charles County was completed in 2008.
* Phase III: This two mile section, from the Wildewood development south to the Wal-Mart shopping Center, is being constructed primarily by private developers; South Plaza, Wildewood, and Wal-Mart have completed sections along their development frontage.
* Phase IV - Phase IV-A from Wal-Mart to Chancellor’s Run Road in California is nearly complete. Phase IV-B from Chancellor’s Run Road to Pegg Road will be coordinated with the future construction of FDR Boulevard, a community roadway project.
* Phase VI - from MD Route 5 to MD Route 236 in Mechanicsville is planned for design in FY11 and construction in FY14.
* Other Phases: Phases VII, VIII and IX, from Wildewood north to Baggett Park, are planned for FY15 and beyond as future funding permits.
Funding for Phase V of Three Notch Trail was provided by the Board of County Commissioners for St. Mary’s County; the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Surface Transportation Program, via the Maryland Department of Transportation’s (MDOT) Transportation Enhancement Program and National Recreational Trails Program; and from Maryland’s Program Open Space.
“Developing the County’s railroad right-of-way into a hiking/biking trail will provide numerous recreational, tourism and transportation opportunities,” said Francis Jack Russell, President, Board of County Commissioners. “We are especially grateful for the Transportation Enhancement Project award which will assist the County with approximately 50% of the Phase V construction costs and help us promote the health and recreational benefits of walking, running, biking and other types of exercise.”
"Transportation is more than roads and rails," said Transportation Secretary Beverley Swaim?Staley. "Maryland's trail network is a valuable asset providing citizens with both recreational and transportation benefits for bikers and pedestrians. Under the leadership of Governor Martin O'Malley, we now have in place a comprehensive statewide trail plan that will help guide future investment and improvement to Maryland's trail network."
For more information on the Three Notch Trail, please contact the Department of Recreation and Parks at (301) 475-4200 ext. 1811 or log on to www.stmarysmd.com/recreate and click on parks and facilities.