Seven TRED volunteers braved the early morning Georgia heat and humidity and begun marking the trails through the woods at the old GE site off Redmond Road Saturday. Now the property of the City of Rome, these future trails will give Romans a wonderful place to walk, run, or bike in nature along relatively flat terrain and when completed, there will be 4 miles of twisting routes for all ages to enjoy plus a 1-mile walking path along the perimeter. This public-private trail building partnership between the City of Rome government and TRED, is the second project to be undertaken with the first project being the Jackson Hill Trail network that now has 5 miles of looping trails around the old Fort Norton Civil War. Creating recreational trails on this beautiful property has long been a dream of the City of Rome and hopefully in the future the GE property can mirror the popularity and amenities that Ridge Ferry Park offers to residents and visitors.
More volunteers are needed for trailbuilding. If you would like to volunteer, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Rome, GA-Rome resident and TRED Board of Advisor, Dan Greeson was recently awarded the Steve Reynolds “Man of the Year” by the Keep Georgia Beautiful Foundation at the annual lunch meeting in Atlanta. Dan was nominated by TRED President, Julie Smith, and Keep Rome Floyd Beautiful Director Mary Hardin Thornton for his dedication to keeping the Heritage Trails clean from litter and debris. The Steve Reynolds “Man of the Year” Award honors an outstanding man who has demonstrated lifelong leadership in raising public awareness about solid waste issues, litter prevention and/or the need for citizens to participate in activities that preserve and enhance natural resources and public lands. The award is dedicated to a volunteer or an employee who excels beyond his normal job description.
A retired mortgage banker, Dan would often find himself riding Rome’s Heritage Trail system and noticing that the 13.5 miles of the trails were often littered with trash and overflowing garbage cans. While public works, the Rome Floyd Parks and Recreation Authority, and the city/county are responsible for collecting garbage and trash pick up, as with any public department, the job was larger than the amount of employees. While riding on one of the most bucolic and scenic trail sections one day, Dan was struck by the juxtaposition of overflowing garbage cans and cigarette butts along the trail and how the litter took away from his experience of riding the trails. Dan then took it upon himself to transform into “Dan the Trail Clean Up Man”. Since then, Dan has been a regular feature on the Heritage Trails for two years and embodies the spirit of Steve Reynolds in his commitment to keeping the trails clean.
TRED and Keep Rome Floyd Beautiful are dually pledged to helping citizens increase their quality of life in Rome and Floyd County by keeping green spaces, trails, and urban areas clean and litter free, thereby creating a safer and move liable community.
LEFT TO RIGHT: KEVIN PERRY, KEEP GEORGIA BEAUTIFUL BOARD OF DIRECTORS, MARY HARDIN THORNTON, KRFB, JULIE SMITH, TRED, DAN GREESON, KAYLEE SARTORATO, KRFB, AND SARAH VISSER, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE KEEP GEORGIA BEAUTIFUL FOUNDATION
With all the talk lately in Rome and Floyd County about trails, TRED thought it would be good to share some trail verbiage so we can all speak the same language to the WIMBY’s (Want It In My Backyard) and continue our push to make Rome and Floyd County and beyond a healthy, economically viable, recreation and tourist destination by investing in trails.
Silver Comet open house
The Rome contingent at the public forum in Cedartown on Monday night, April 20, 2015, included Bob Moore (from front), Chris McCormick and Peggy Moore. Bob and Peggy Moore owned Bob’s Cycle Shop in Rome for many years. Chris is a past president of the Coosa Valley Cycling Association. (Tricia Cambron/SJ)
CEDARTOWN — A goodly number of Rome residents made the trek to Cedartown Monday night to get a first look at proposed routes to take the Silver Comet Trail from Cedartown to Cave Spring.
About 10 of the 75 people at the public forum organized by planners from Northwest Georgia Regional Commission and Alta Planning+Design were from Rome, including Peggy and Bob Moore, who owned Bob’s Cycle Shop for more than 30 years.
Peggy Moore said the couple came to the forum for the love of trails, and hope to add the connector to the many miles they’ve already pedaled on the Silver Comet Trail. Moore said she believes the extension will boost Cave Spring’s economy, and maybe one day Rome’s.
“It’s like a stepping stone,” she said.
Her hope is that a Rome link will be a consideration in planning for the Cedartown-Cave Spring link. That’s a theme Alta project manager Britt Storck has heard before.
“A lot of people come up to me and say ‘how do we connect this to Rome,’ and I say, ‘I can’t tell you.’ That’s not what we’re considering now,” Storck said.
Storck emphasized planners did not design the maps with an eye toward how the proposed trail might eventually connect with Rome.
“That never was and will not be a consideration in the final feasibility report. It is not in our scope of work,” he said.
The public forum, which ran around two hours, skipped the presentation and comment format, and instead invited visitors to browse the various materials provided on easels and on tables around the room.
Members of NWGRC and Alta circulated among the crowd, answering questions and engaging in conversations with groups and individuals.
The routes are similar, generally following Seab Green Road to Old Cave Spring Road out of Cedartown and paralleling Perry Farm Road or Cedartown Road to Cave Spring. Route 1 is more rural, Route 2 includes a loop around Cave Spring and Route 3 shares a portion of public highway in the Mountain Home area.
Storck said all three were selected based on the same considerations, and each consideration was given equal weight in the decision. Those included property rights, avoiding intrusion on private property, impact costs and access to natural resources. Planners also considered what was the most direct route, and whether the link should tie into the Pinhoti Trail.
Paulette Harbin has lived in Cave Spring for 38 years and is the owner of Nanna’s near the town square. She said she couldn’t hike or bike anymore because “my knees won’t let me,” but she came to the forum to support her friends who can use the trail. She prefers Route 1.
“It seems like the simplest, there’s less to do (to construct it), less sharing with the Pinhoti trail,” she said, and “there’s beautiful views of the ridge of hills running along the path.”
NWGRC planner Charles Jones said funds to build the proposed connection could come from state or federal funding, some of which would require a city or county match.
The Silver Comet Trail is the nation’s longest and oldest paved rail-trail, extending 61.5 miles and connecting seven cities and three counties from Smyrna to the Georgia/Alabama state line.
Alta’s 2013 economic impact report said that this in-state expansion alone has the potential to double the number of users and economic benefits on a local and regional scale.
-Tricia Cambron, Cedartown Standard-Journal
Love art? Love trails? Love TRED? Marry all of your loves by attending the opening night reception of “Paint the Trails with Art” at Rome’s ECO Center on Thursday, April 9 from 6:30-8:30 .pm.
Local guest artists and students have donated their artwork in all mediums depicting trails and the outdoors and the art will be priced reasonably for you to take home several one of a kind pieces. A beautiful handmade quilt made from Coosa Valley Cycling Association ride t-shirts will be up for silent auction as well as handmade knives, ceramic crosses, and stationary.
Other artists include: Cave Spring potter John Johnston, painter Siri Selle, photographer Joe Cook, ironworker Charles DeYoung, Rome Public Information Officer Kristi Kent, Karen Jordan, as well as students from local elementary and high schools. Appetizers and drinks will be served and all proceeds from the art will go to TRED.
A sampling of the art that will be for sale:
MAC Knives custom knife-
Doug Walker, Rome News-Tribune
More than two dozen public officials turned out Monday for the first of two workshops this week to consider a possible extension of the Silver Comet Trail from Cedartown to Cave Spring.
Sandra Lindsey, director of the Cave Spring Downtown Development Authority, said she’s excited about the tourism opportunities a connection to the 61.5-mile multi-use trail would bring.
Cedartown Council Chairman Dale Tuck also was enthusiastic about extending the pathway that starts in Smyrna and runs through her city.
“I think this would be a great boost to the city of Cedartown,” she said.
In addition to officials from the two cities, the session at the Cave Spring Public Library drew representatives from the Georgia Department of Transportation, the Rome-Floyd Planning Department and the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission.
Consultant Britt Storck of ALTA Planning and Design presented several potential routes for discussion and said her team would look at the physical sites this week.
“These maps are just a starting point,” she reminded the gathering. “We’re going to study lots of different opportunities, constraints and different alignment options.”
She said there’s a high rate of return on investment in trails, noting that trails in new residential or mixed-use developments increases property values by 10 to 20 percent.
Katelyn DiGioia, GDOT bike and pedestrian engineer, said there is “plenty of evidence” — particularly in major metropolitan areas — that more people are using bikes to commute to work.
“We’re getting better at tracking that,” she said.
The ALTA team will present the results of their work to the same group of stakeholders Friday at 9 a.m.
Storck said the public will have an opportunity to comment about the project during a workshop later this spring on a date yet to be determined. The sessions this week were designed for public officials.
TRED of Rome-Floyd County has been awarded a $2,500 grant from the Georgia Power Foundation, Inc., to help promote local trails. Shown during a check presentation on Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2015, are TRED board of directors member Harry Brock, TRED service intern Emily Melchoir, TRED secretary/treasurer Jim Hunter, Georgia Power Vice President of Northwest Georgia Operations Anne Kaiser, TRED President Julie Smith, and Georgia Power information manager Toni Hannah. (Jeremy Stewart/RN-T.com)
Posted on Feb 5, 2015
The list of items Julie Smith reeled off Wednesday afternoon were a mix of preliminary ideas and fully realized plans, but she spoke passionately about each one.
Smith, who is president of Trails for Recreation and Economic Development of Rome-Floyd County, said the start of 2015 has been exciting for the nonprofit.
“We’ve got lots of things in the works and going on,” Smith said.
Smith, along with other members of the TRED board of directors, met with Georgia Power Vice President of Northwest Georgia Anne Kaiser and information officer Toni Hannah on Wednesday for a check presentation.
The local advocacy group received a grant for $2,500 from Georgia Power Foundation Inc. It was the second large grant TRED has recently received to help promote trails and alternative transportation in Rome and Floyd County.
Smith said they were given a $2,000 grant from New Belgium Brewing Company that will be used to print new, comprehensive maps of the Heritage Trail System.
She said they have worked closely with the city during the process of updating the city-county bike-pedestrian plan update.
“We’ve always given the city kudos for being proactive and wanting to pull people to downtown through the expansion of trails,” Smith said.
While a proposed portion of the update that would have laid out a plan to close lanes on Broad Street to accommodate bike lanes was removed before it was put out for public comment, Smith said there are still some good points in it.
“We’re excited to possibly be able to connect the four colleges,” Smith said, referring to Shorter University, Berry College, Georgia Highlands College, and Georgia Northwestern Technical College.
“Anything we can do to get people out of cars and on bikes and trails is important,” Smith said. “We just hope that there are funds available in the future to get some of the planned upgrades completed.”
Smith said TRED is also working with the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission to help get a feasibility study on the possibility of connecting Cave Spring with the Silver Comet Trail in Cedartown.
Thanks, Darren, mugging for TRED in his TRED shirt and coffee mug. If you want to do the same, mugs and shirts are on sale at for $10 each at Cycle Therapy.
The Georgia Trail Summit is an awesome event that will take place for the second year in Athens, GA June 4-6. Organizers are focused on the themes of “Building a Culture of Health on Trails in Georgia” and “Trails as a Transportation Solution”. If you are interested in learning more about trails and the many positive benefits of them and how to be involved in your community (hint, TRED), please plan on attending the Summit. Visit Georgia Trail Summit.
This document encapsulates the work of the organizers and is a “clif’s notes” version of why trails, what is the difference between trails and greenways, how are trails funded, trails in Georgia, and other resources.
TRED will host its first art show and reception, Thursday, April 9 at the ECO Center in Rome. Local artists and student artists will have their work showcased for a week after the opening reception with the various mediums focused on trails and outdoor activities. All proceeds will go to support TRED.
However, TRED needs a catchy title for the art show….any ideas? Message Emily.