It’s full speed ahead for the Cape Cod Rail Trail, as crews move into the third phase of the trail’s extension project. Phase three is expected to eventually take the trail from Peter Homer Park in South Yarmouth and continue it on to Barnstable.
Right now, phase three of the Cape Cod Rail Trail extension is said to be in the early design phase. State transportation officials are seeking out public input on the project. People have a couple of more weeks to submit comments and give feedback.
In all, the nearly four-and-a-half-mile long expansion project is expected to top $9 million. Most of the cost is being covered by state and federal funds.
As part of phase three, crews plan to upgrade an already existing shared use path in Yarmouth. They’ll also be adding in a spur off of that path, leading to Mary Dunn Road in Barnstable, and ending it near the Independence Drive intersection.
Crews plan to add in flashing beacons at the grade crossings to alert drivers. They also plan to build or expand some parking lots in the area.
Currently, the Cape Cod Rail Trail runs from South Yarmouth to South Wellfleet. At 25-miles long, travelers pass through Yarmouth, Dennis and Harwich. They also travel through Brewster, Orleans and Eastham, before ending in Wellfleet.
Locals commonly use it for recreation and transportation, while the trail is also considered a draw for tourists. The well-maintained trail is said to be fun for those of all abilities.
You’ll find plenty of spots to stop and grab something to eat and drink along the way. There are also several bike shops that provide bicycle rentals along the trail.
The majority of the existing trail sits on a former railroad right-of-way. Construction of the new extension could begin sometime in spring of 2023.