To the Editor:
I would like to thank The Wanderer for its detailed reporting of the Mattapoisett Rail Trail’s progress and Town Administrator Michael Gagne for his kind words at Finance Committee meeting regarding the work of Steve Kelleher and myself. Across the state and the country, promoting bike path construction is a time-consuming job; but the ultimate payoff is well worth the effort. Research shows that bike path investments return much more than expected to the communities where they are located. After the Outer Banks in South Carolina invested 6.7 million dollars in bike paths, people began returning to that area specifically for its bike-friendly environment. Now, cyclists annually contribute $60 million to the Outer Banks’ economy. In a similar scenario, the state of Oregon attributes $400 million of its tourism industry to bicycling. These days, our South Coast’s economy could use all the help it can get. South Coast can and should be a premier bicycling destination. By supporting the Mattapoisett Rail Trail, residents also support the completion of the South Coast Bikeway and the economic well being of our Town. And upon completion of the trail, residents will experience improved options for exercise, fun, and transportation around town. Please come to the Mattapoisett Town Meeting on Monday, May 12 and support the Mattapoisett Rail Trail.
President, Friends of the Mattapoisett Bike Path
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