Pocono Bike & Hike Trail Awarded $550,000

Pocono Bike & Hike Trail Awarded $550,000

28-Mile Trail Project Underway 

 TOBYHANNA TOWNSHIP, PA – The Pocono Bike & Hike Trail System took a giant step forward as Governor Tom Wolf announced a $550,000 grant to support the trail development efforts.

Grant funding will be used to improve the 1.7-mile Wilkes-Barre & Eastern Railway Hiking Trail already under ownership of Tobyhanna Township as well as improve safety and signalization along bike lanes on SR 940 and SR 115, with trail head access established at the Austin T. Blakeslee Recreation Area in Blakeslee.

Constructed in phases, the Pocono Bike & Hike Trail will be a 28-mile system integrating biking, hiking, historical and natural interpretation areas, bike sharing, and eventual trolley stops.

The trail will span from Pocono Summit to Blakeslee and encompass the Villages of Tobyhanna Township. System components include dedicated bike lanes on SR 940 and SR 115, a 1.7-mile hiking trail on the Wilkes-Barre & Eastern Rail Bed, and enhanced trail networks at the Austin T. Blakeslee Recreation Area.

Funding for the grant came from a $66.8 million through the Surface Transportation Block Grant Program Set-Aside, also known as Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside. The TA Set-Aside provides funding for projects and activities defined as transportation alternatives, including on- and off-road pedestrian and bicycle facilities, infrastructure projects for improving non-driver access to public transportation and enhanced mobility, community improvement activities, environmental mitigation, trails that serve a transportation purpose, and safe routes to school projects.

“This grant allows our community to move full steam ahead on developing the Pocono Bike & Hike Trail. We are especially thankful for the continued support of Sen. Mario Scavello, Rep. Jack Rader, and NEPA Alliance team, who ranked the significance of this project. Together we are enhancing our regional quality of life,” noted Tobyhanna Township Manager John J. Jablowski, Jr.