An inactive old rail corridor extends south from the MBTA Green Line D branch through Newton Upper Falls, overgrown and collecting debris. The plan is to convert it into the Upper Falls Greenway, a safe, car-free trail for walking, jogging, bicycling and general recreation, with easy access to the commercial areas on adjacent Needham Street for shopping and commuting. The really nice touch – the project can be built for free - i.e no tax money
The plan works like this: The MBTA owns the land, they have given a long term (99 years) lease to the property to the city for a $1. The city has enlisted Iron Horse Preservation Society, a nationally known rails-to-trails non-profit, to create the trail. Iron Horse will remove the obsolete tracks and railroad ties, sells them for scrap, and the proceeds pay for the construction of the trail.
The Upper Falls Greenway Trail will be a mile-plus linear park terminating at a scenic overlook of the Charles River. The trail surface itself will be rolled stone dust, a nice surface for walking and bicycling. A future trail connection to Needham, Dover, and Medfield via the proposed Bay Colony Rail Trail could provide the residents of Newton a chance to enjoy an off-road experience rivaling the popular Minuteman Bikeway in Lexington.
View a PowerPoint presentation about the plan here.