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Dutchess Rail Trail – phase3


08-08-10

As it was the weekend,I would ride the old ROW RT-under-construction to Maloney Rd. This would provide me a bit of respite from the hot summer sun and bypass several hills-from-hell as well. I would also be able to see what was going on, construction wise, on the ROW. The ROW forms a strip of woods through the still mostly open farm fields. The ROW, therefore, is mostly hidden from view. As I rode the first section to Titusville Rd.,I had noted several new drain culverts. On a previous ride along this section, a large corugated metal pipe was being installed. I had hoped during today’s ride, the work for this would be finished and the
 pipe would be covered. On that previous ride I had to go off trail a bit to go around the open trench for the new pipe. I had seen a number of “PROTECTED SITE” signs in the vicinity. This,the fact that where the pipe crossed is dry (at least this time of the year) and the way the pipe extended a bit from the ROW without a concrete culvert,all led me to think this pipe may be a “critter crossing” tunnel to allow small semi-aquatic creatures, such as turtles, to traverse under the ROW from one side to the other.


the still at-grade ROW crossing of Titusville Rd looking north – August 2010

I had just taken a picture at the still-at grade Titusville crossing when a woman riding an ATB crossed the county highway from the south side. She was closely followed by several pre-teen children riding child sized ATB’s. I had quipped “I see I am not the only one disregrading the trail closed signs” “Mother Goose”
 continued north with her “goslings” following behind her. I continued south on the not-yet-a-railtrail. Up ahead I saw the boom for what I had thought, at that moment, a large crane to be used for placement of the new bridge over Maloney Rd. I had become familiar with this type of crane on caterpillar treads, known as a
 “crawler crane”,during the construction of the Walkway. The 2 used for the Walkway construction had become a part of the Highland-Poughkeepsie “skyline” for a year. As I got closer to what I had thought was a “crawler crane”, was in fact, a “pile driver”. There was a trench spanning the width of the ROW but there were heavy steel plates to allow vehicles, or heavy equipment, to cross. I rode the temporary side access down to Maloney Rd. at the crossing where a new bridge is being built.


  The south side concrete retaining wall / support for the new bridge was still clad in forms. On the north side though, the forms had been mostly removed. In similar fasion to the new tunnel under Mile Hill Rd. for the Hudson Valley Rail Trail, a faux stone block casting was used. However,a gray tinting was used for the concrete. The official DC website for this rail trail, and the Harlem Valley RT, mention the new above grade crossings at Titusville Rd. and SR 376 (near Brookmead Plaza) and the new replacement bridge here at the Maloney Rd. crossing. However, the website does not mention anything about a replacement bridge for the original above grade crossing at Diddell Rd.

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