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New Jersey Planning Officials Recognized Lawrence Hopewell Trail with a 2013 NJPO Achievement in Planning Award

05/22/2013

(WOODBRIDGE, NJ) – New Jersey Planning Officials recognized the Lawrence Hopewell Trail with a 2013 NJPO Achievement in Planning Award during a recent banquet at the Woodbridge Hilton Hotel. 

 

The NJPO is made up of planning and zoning officers, attorneys, engineers, architects, and others. It is neither a state agency nor a professional organization.  It was formed by and is still led by the civilian planners, volunteer local residents appointed by mayors and/or municipal governing bodies to serve on planning boards and zoning boards of adjustment. They chart and preserve a community’s quality of life standards.

 

In the program announcing the award, the NJPO described the LHT: “The Lawrence Hopewell Trail was originally established by Bristol-Myers Squibb and the Educational Testing Service to establish an interconnected network of bicycle trails/walking paths between their respective corporate campuses. Through the involvement of Mercer County, Lawrence Township, Hopewell Township and Pennington Borough the trail system has been expanded to link village centers to those centers of employment and provide active recreational opportunities to the public.”

 

The NJPO brochure continued, “The Trail is a 20+ miles bicycle and pedestrian recreational trail and transportation corridor through the public and private lands that grew out of a commitment to improving the quality of life for all who live or work in the region. The Trail supports an active, livable, and sustainable community with alternative forms of transportation to reduce reliance on automobiles. It also promotes health and fitness, recreation and outdoor education.”

 

NJPO Executive Director Jason Kasler said, “We honored the Lawrence Hopewell Trail because it is a citizen-led effort that provides an important amenity for the communities of Lawrence and Hopewell Townships.”

 

Winn Thompson, vice president of the NJPO, a member of the Pennington Borough Planning and Zoning Board and the person who nominated the LHT for the award, said, “The Lawrence Hopewell Trail is a unique public/private partnership led by two of the principal corporations in our region, together with participation by local municipalities, Mercer County, state and federal governments and local citizen groups to create an asset in our community which will serve everyone for generations.”

 

Eleanor Horne, co-president of the LHT and former vice president at Educational Testing Services, said, “We are honored to have been recognized at the 2013 New Jersey Planning Officials ceremony. We share a vision with the members of the NJPO to support and enhance our local communities, so this award is very special to us.”

 

“Since 2002 a group of dedicated citizens has been planning and eventually building a biking and walking trail we call the LHT,” said Becky Taylor, also co-president of the trail as well as president of BTaylor Public Affairs.  “Without the upfront planning, our trail would be nothing but a great idea. Now our trail is about 80 percent complete, enabling people to walk or bike through parks, a village, schools, corporate campuses and neighborhoods in Hopewell and Lawrence Townships.”

 

Valid from 05/22/2013 to 06/30/2013

POSTPONED: Lawrence Hopewell Trail & Mercer County Park Commission to Host Full Moon Bike Ride

08/20/2016

NEW DATE SEPTEMBER 17

HOPEWELL, N.J.  (Aug. 19, 2016) – With a high probability of widespread rain and thunderstorms this Sunday, August 21, the Lawrence Hopewell Trail board and Mercer County Park Commission decided today to postpone its annual Full Moon Ride to Saturday, September 17, with a rain date set for September 18.

The event was originally scheduled to take place this Sunday, but the board and county staff determined that moving the event – which has drawn over 500 participants for the last two years – is necessary to ensure the safety of hundreds of riders and dozens of volunteers expected at event.

An added benefit is that the ride will take place earlier in the evening because the moon rises earlier in September.

"With an expected moon rise of 7:47 p.m. on September 17, we can start the ride a full hour earlier than we planned for this Sunday," said Jay Watson, LHT board member and curator of the Full Moon Ride. "Our ride will begin at 8:30, when the moon will be high enough to cast good light on the trail route. Riders will cycle six miles through the meadows and woodlands of Mercer Meadows."

"The weather forecast for this Sunday evening -- for a cold front bringing widespread rain and thunderstorms  -- leaves us little choice but to move this l event to September," Watson said. "Our event co-sponsor, the Mercer County Parks Commission, agrees with this decision and is now booking the event for September 17, with a rain date of the next night."

Those who previously registered for the ride will be automatically registered for the September 17 ride. Those who can't attend and who have already paid the registration fee of $10 per person, $20 per family, can be reimbursed by requesting reimbursement at info@lhtrail.org. Registrants who cannot attend may also choose to donate fees already paid to the LHT, which is a nonprofit community group supported by generous donations from individuals and groups. Funds collected from the registration will go directly toward offsetting the cost of the event, continued construction of the LHT as well as ongoing trail maintenance.

Registration for the ride, which is open to adults and youngsters aged 12 and up, is possible through September 17 at http://lhtrail.org/2016/07/super-moon-ride-2016-registration/.  Registration online is highly recommended!

This is the third year in a row for this nighttime cycling excursion. The ride will begin at Rosedale Park parking lot off Federal City Road will take cyclists through Maidenhead Trail, on to the Twin Pines Trail and then back to Rosedale Park. The ride is expected to take about 45 minutes to complete.

Riders are encouraged to decorate their bikes to add to the fun. There will be limited number of glow sticks available to participants to light up their bikes and bicycle headlights are recommended for additional safety. Helmets are required. Ice cream vendors will be on hand selling their frozen concoctions.

If you have any questions regarding the event please email info@lhtrailorg.com.

 

About the Lawrence Hopewell Trail

The Lawrence Hopewell Trail (LHT) is a 22-mile bicycle and pedestrian recreational trail and transportation corridor through public and private lands in Lawrence and Hopewell Townships, Mercer County, N.J. The idea for the LHT grew out of a commitment to improving the quality of life for all who live or work in the region. The LHT supports an active, livable and sustainable community with alternative forms of transportation to reduce the reliance on automobiles. It also promotes health and fitness, recreation and outdoor education. The LHT is a key member of the Circuit Coalition, a 750-mile network of bicycle and pedestrian trails connecting people to jobs, communities, and parks in the Greater Philadelphia Region. For more information, please visit www.lhtrail.org.

 

About Mercer Meadows

The Mercer County Park Commission manages diverse offerings within its more than 10,000 acres of parks, recreational facilities, and open space throughout Mercer County. Mercer Meadows, where the Full Moon Bike Ride will take place, consists of more than 1,600 acres, divided among five separate districts. Miles of mowed and gravel trails provide visitors and their families with scenic walking and biking routes through the meadows and woodland. Fishing is a popular activity at the park's four water bodies.  For more information, please visit www.mercercountyparks.org.

Valid from 08/20/2016 to 09/18/2016

Lawrence Hopewell Trail to Host Four-Mile Bike Ride Sunday, April 28

04/22/2013

(Hopewell, NJ) - Lawrence Hopewell Trail board members will ride an approximate four-mile stretch of the LHT from the Brearley House off of Princeton Pike to Village Park in Lawrence Township on Sunday, April 28, starting at 10 a.m. The public is invited to join the family-friendly ride.

 

The LHT board members will be riding in part to enjoy the beauty of the trail and in part to assess whether the segment needs more signage and to determine how best to describe the segment in LHT literature.
 

“A priority for this year is to make the LHT more accessible to the public. The trail is a great asset for families as well as individuals who want to get some exercise while enjoying the beauty of nature,” said Robert Sopko, LHT board member and chair of the public relations committee as well as former superintendent of the Hopewell Valley Schools.

 

“We are in the process of updating LHT literature so we accurately portray the trail,” said Lindsey Bohra, LHT board member and chair of the public relations committee and current executive director of Lawrenceville Main Street.  “By categorizing the segments, we can tell the public which segments are more appropriate for families and which are better for cyclists looking for a challenging ride.” She said parking will be available at the Brearley House, and LHT members will be riding bikes, some accompanied by their children in child bike carriers.

The Lawrence Hopewell Trail is a nonprofit, community-based organization developing a 22-plus mile safe, family-friendly trail through the Lawrence and Hopewell communities.  About three-quarters of the trail is usable now; the remainder is planned for completion over the next year.

The LHT’s board is made up of community leaders, interested citizens and two major area employers. It started in 2002 when a group of community leaders met at Bristol-Myers Squibb to address concerns about diminishing opportunities for safe, off-road biking and walking. Hopewell and Lawrence Township officials, state and county government representatives and several private organizations including Educational Testing Service, joined the group, and an independent nonprofit organization was formed to build a biking and walking trail.

Check the website for up-to-date information on the trail sections and upcoming events: www.lhtrail.org.

For more information, contact Mike Gray at mngray36@comcast.net or (732) 668-9505.

 

Valid from 04/22/2013 to 04/29/2013

Lawrence Hopewell Trail Hosts Four Bicycling Rides October 19

10/15/2013

(HOPEWELL, NJ) – On Sat., Oct. 19, the Lawrence Hopewell Trail will host four bicycling rides starting at various places along the trail in Hopewell and Lawrence Townships and ending at the Hunt House, headquarters of Mercer County Park Commission, off of Blackwell Road in Hopewell Township. Everyone is invited to start at one of several different starting points to ride in to the Hunt House where everybody will meet. LHT board members will hand out LHT magnets and maps to those wishing to extend their rides and explore Mercer Meadows.

The ride-in details:

1.            10 a.m. from Bristol-Myers Squibb Hopewell entrance on Pennington-Rocky Hill Road, led by Mike Gray and Jill Young. If the small lot is filled, you will be directed to the construction entrance lot also on Rocky Hill-Pennington Road, across from Elm Ridge Road.

2.            10 a.m. from Twin Pines Athletic Complex paved parking lot on Pennington-Lawrenceville Road west of intersection with Federal City Road, led by Cie Stroud.

3.            10 a.m. from Village Park parking at the end of Gordon Avenue, led by Donald Pillsbury.

4.            9:30 a.m. from the Brearley House at the end of Meadow Road off of Princeton Pike, led by Pete Garnich.

 

The Lawrence Hopewell Trail (LHT) is a 20+ miles bicycle and pedestrian recreational trail and transportation corridor through public and private lands in Lawrence and Hopewell Townships, Mercer County, N.J. The idea for the LHT grew out of a commitment to improving the quality of life for all who live or work in the region.  The LHT supports an active, livable, and sustainable community with alternative forms of transportation to reduce reliance on automobiles. It also promotes health and fitness, recreation, and outdoor education.

The LHT’s board is made up of citizens who are committed to the development and use of trails. It started in 2002 when a group of community leaders met at Bristol-Myers Squibb to address concerns about diminishing opportunities for safe, off-road biking and walking. Hopewell and Lawrence Township officials, state and county government representatives and several private organizations including Educational Testing Service, joined the group, and an independent nonprofit organization was formed to build a biking and walking trail.

Valid from 10/15/2013 to 10/20/2013

Lawrence Hopewell Trail to Host Four Rides As Part of Hopewell Valley Come Out and Play Weekend

06/02/2016

(HOPEWELL, N.J.) – As part of the Hopewell Valley's Come Out and Play weekend, the Lawrence Hopewell Trail will again host four family-friendly bicycling rides on Saturday, June 11. The rides start at various places along the trail in Hopewell and Lawrence Townships and end at the Hunt House, headquarters of Mercer County Park Commission, located at the heart of Mercer Meadows.

 

"All children from elementary age and up are welcome to participate, along with their parents," said Jill Young, co-chair of the LHT Programming and Public Relations Committee.  "Parents with smaller children in trailers are also welcome, although we don't recommend children riding bikes with training wheels at the ride-ins."

 

Lindsey Bohra, the other Programming and PR Committee co-chair, said, "We encourage riders to arrive 15 to 20 minutes early to be ready to roll at the scheduled times. All groups will have a ride leader, who will lead them to the Hunt House, where they will receive LHT maps and can explore the beautiful Mercer Meadows trails."

 

The rides start as follows:

 

  1. 9:30 a.m. from the Brearley House at the end of Meadow Road off of Princeton Pike.
  2. 10 a.m. from the Bristol-Myers Squibb Hopewell entrance on Pennington-Rocky Hill Road. If the small lot is filled, participants will be directed to the construction entrance lot also on Rocky Hill-Pennington Road, across from Elm Ridge Road.
  3. 10 a.m. from Twin Pines Athletic Complex paved parking lot on Federal City Road.
  4. 10 a.m. from Village Park parking at the end of Gordon Avenue.

 

The Lawrence Hopewell Trail (LHT) is a 20-plus mile bicycle and pedestrian recreational trail and transportation corridor through public and private lands in Lawrence and Hopewell Townships, Mercer County, N.J. The idea for the LHT grew out of a commitment to improving the quality of life for all who live or work in the region.  The LHT supports an active, livable, and sustainable community with alternative forms of transportation to reduce reliance on automobiles. It also promotes health and fitness, recreation, and outdoor education.

The LHT's board is made up of citizens who are committed to the development and use of trails. It started in 2002 when a group of community leaders met at Bristol-Myers Squibb to address concerns about diminishing opportunities for safe, off-road biking and walking. Hopewell and Lawrence Township officials, state and county government representatives and several private organizations including Educational Testing Service, joined the group, and an independent nonprofit organization was formed to build a biking and walking trail.

Valid from 06/02/2016 to 06/13/2016

Lawrence Hopewell Trail to Celebrate Opening of 2 New Segments on October 2, 2013

09/27/2013

(HOPEWELL, NJ)—The Lawrence Hopewell Trail will celebrate the opening of two connecting segments over a mile long on Tuesday, Oct. 1 when corporate, community, education and public officials cut the ribbon at the Bristol-Myers Squibb Princeton Pike and Lawrenceville School segments. The new eight-foot wide asphalt trail runs from Princeton Pike on the vacant BMS property, past the Brearley Oak and around the northern tip of the property. It crosses Lewisville Road and connects directly with the Lawrenceville School at its baseball field parking lot before becoming stone dust and winding its way through campus.

The ceremony will take place at 11:30 a.m. on the BMS property, just 100 yards from the Lawrenceville School baseball field parking lot. Speakers will include Lawrenceville School Head Master Liz Duffy, BMS Director of Community Affairs Fred Egenolf and Senior Program Officer Andrew Johnson at the William Penn Foundation, which provided $248,000 for the construction project.

Light refreshments will be served as attendees celebrate the completion of the three-month construction project. The BMS segment of the trail is 3,100 feet long, and the new Lawrenceville School segment is 1,900 feet long. The trail continues on the interior school road of the campus out to Route 206 and Lawrenceville Main Street.

 

•             Event: Ribbon-cutting ceremony for LHT segment running from BMS Princeton Pike through the Lawrenceville School.

•             When:  Tues., Oct. 1, 11:30 a.m.

•             Where: On the BMS property just 100 yards from the Lawrenceville School baseball field parking lot. Attendees should park at the Lawrenceville School lot on Lewisville Road.

•             Included: Light refreshments and celebration of the construction project.

 

Valid from 09/27/2013 to 10/03/2013

Lawrence Hopewell Trail

10/12/2009

Valid from 10/09/2009

Pennington Connection to the Lawrence Hopewell Trail Officially Opens

07/08/2014

Link Made Possible by Grant Secured by Congressman Rush Holt & Bristol-Myers Squibb addition

(HOPEWELL/PENNINGTON, NJ) -- Congressman Rush Holt and Hopewell Valley officials and business leaders today cut the ceremonial ribbon to officially open the Pennington Connection to the Lawrence Hopewell Trail. The connection was made possible through a grant secured by Congressman Holt and through Bristol-Myers Squibb’s construction of an additional quarter mile of trail linking the existing trail on Pennington Rocky Hill Road to the new section going into Pennington Borough.

"The founders of the Lawrence Hopewell Trail have worked hard for years to plan, fund, and construct this network of recreational trails open to all. The Borough of Pennington has made a real contribution to the livability of the region by linking to the LHT loop. I am pleased to have been able to help by securing $266,760 in federal funds to support the completion the Pennington Connection we are officially opening today,” said Congressman Holt. “In the most densely populated state in the country, we all know how special it is to have so many partners come together to make a more livable community. Like many fortunate enough to live in the area, I often walk and bike on the Lawrenceville Hopewell Trail, which adds to the quality of life of in our community."

The Lawrence Hopewell Trail is a biking and walking trail looping through Hopewell and Lawrence Township.  It is the creation of a grassroots collaboration formed in 2002. Access from Pennington Borough to the LHT was made possible with the completion of what is called the Pennington Connection. The “connection” was proposed by the Borough to link King George Road on Pennington’s border with the nearby LHT along Pennington-Rocky Hill Road.  

The project was completed in two phases. The first phase, from the Stony Brook Bridge through a large wetland area, was constructed last year and funded largely through federal grants to Pennington Borough. The first phase features a 600-foot-long retaining wall with railing. The concrete retaining wall was necessary due to a sharp drop off in grade along the west side of Pennington-Rocky Hill Road. The retaining wall was a major contributor to project cost of $456, 929.

The main source of funding for the first phase was the $266,760 federal grant secured with the assistance of Congressman Holt in 2009. Pennington Borough obtained a second grant of $24,700 through the federally funded Recreational Trails grant program. The balance of funding was provided by the Borough’s Open Space Trust Fund. The fund is supported by the borough’s 1 cent open space tax.

In order to complete the “connection,” during the spring Bristol-Myers Squibb extended the trail on its Pennington-Rocky Hill Road frontage from Old Mill Road in Hopewell Township south toward Kind George Road in Pennington.  The LHT now traverses the full length of Bristol-Myers Squibb’s property on Pennington-Rocky Hill Road, linking with LHT segments on Wargo Road and at the neighboring Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed to the west, Mercer Meadows Park to the east, and the Pennington Connection to the south.  

“Both Hopewell Township and Mercer County were valuable partners with Pennington Borough in the project’s first phase. The Township funded the design work and permitting as well as oversaw the construction of the project on behalf of Pennington Borough. Mercer County, for its part, replaced a long expanse of guard rail between Pennington-Rocky Hill Road, a county road, and the trail,” said Tom Ogren, former Pennington Borough Councilman, who was instrumental in working with Congressman Holt to secure the grant.

Pennington Borough Mayor Tony Persichelli added, “We thank Congressman Rush Holt for helping us to obtain the grant for the extension of the LHT and to former Councilman Tom Ogren along with Paul Pogorzelski of Hopewell Township for their efforts in helping to complete this project.  The extension on the outskirts of Pennington Borough will benefit all citizens of Hopewell Valley.”

 “The Pennington Connection is a major step forward in a community-wide goal to enable Hopewell Valley residents to travel throughout our area by walking or biking,” said Hopewell Township Mayor Vanessa Sandom. “We were pleased to partner with our neighbors to make this connection.”

 

 “The Lawrence Hopewell Trail is grateful to all of our partners in the community for helping us create a community amenity that allows families and individuals to enjoy our beautiful surroundings on foot or bicycle. We are thrilled that with the support of Congressman Holt, former Councilman Tom Ogren, and all of the other municipal, county and federal officials involved with the Pennington Connection, we are now able to safely and easily travel along the trail into Pennington and vice versa,” said Becky Taylor, LHT co-president.

 

“The Lawrence Hopewell Trail is truly a community-led project that benefits the community.  The completion of connectors, such as the Pennington Connector, extends the trail and increases the number of people who can use it safely,” said Eleanor Horne, LHT co-president.

 

About the Lawrence Hopewell Trail

The Lawrence Hopewell Trail (LHT) is a 20+ miles bicycle and pedestrian recreational trail and transportation corridor through public and private lands in Lawrence and Hopewell Townships, Mercer County, N.J. The idea for the LHT grew out of a commitment to improving the quality of life for all who live or work in the region.  The LHT supports an active, livable, and sustainable community with alternative forms of transportation to reduce reliance on automobiles. It also promotes health and fitness, recreation, and outdoor education.  For more information, please visit www.lhtrail.org.

Valid from 07/08/2014 to 08/30/2014




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