Why devote resources to another rail trail in Ulster County?

Though the existing rail trails in Ulster County are already providing real benefits to residents and visitors in the region (see below):

  • Longer trails attract more visitors, greater usage and create destination tourism.
  • Expanding and improving linkages between the trails in our region will cause Ulster County to emerge as a leading rail trail destination.
  • Most residents of the northern (and especially northwestern) part of Ulster County do not have access to a rail trail or similar scenic trail with a gentle grade.
  • In recognition of the potential for this project, New York State is providing $2 million in funding for developing this trail.

Impacts of existing Ulster County Rail Trails:

  • Walkway over the Hudson (opened 2009) attracted more than 780,000 visitors in first year and now adds more than $24 million in annual local sales revenues.
  • Hudson Valley Rail Trail (Highland/Lloyd) receives 670,000 visitors annually and has become New York State‚Äôs second-most-popular rail trail.
  • Hurley (O&W) Rail Trail receives estimated 81,000 visitors each year.
  • Wallkill Valley Rail Trail now extends more than 33 miles from Gardiner to Kingston.