SGT to Hold Annual Meeting May 5 in Branford

Hiking to Branford's Ecology Park from a soon-to-be-completed section of the Shoreline Greenway Trail

Hiking to Branford’s Ecology Park from a soon-to-be-completed section of the Shoreline Greenway Trail

Shoreline Greenway Trail will hold its 2017 annual meeting on Friday, May 5, at the Tabor Lutheran Church in Branford. The evening will begin at 5 p.m. with a walk on the Tabor property, site of an SGT section that is expected to be fully surfaced and open by the end of the year. A brief meeting will be held at 6 p.m., followed by a presentation by New Haven City Engineer Giovanni Zinn. All events are open to the public; refreshments will be served.

 Zinn will discuss the successful effort to make New Haven a Bicycle-Friendly Community (it currently has Bronze-level certification) along with the benefits and possibilities inherent in connecting the Shoreline Greenway Trail with New Haven’s network of bike routes, the Farmington Canal Greenway and the East Coast Greenway. Working in partnership with Zinn and the city, SGT plans to extend its trail into the heart of New Haven. The trail had previously been planned to end at Lighthouse Point Park.

giovanni zinn

New Haven City Engineer Giovanni Zinn

Zinn has been New Haven’s city engineer since 2014 and has led or participated in many projects focused on sustainable and livable infrastructure. He has encouraged alternative transportation (including walking and cycling), adopted green infrastructure and worked to reduce the city’s carbon footprint through aggressive energy reduction.

Tabor Lutheran Church is located at 45 Tabor Drive, just south of Branford center off Route 146/South Montowese Street. For more information, contact

SGT Holds Public Meeting in Branford

Shoreline Greenway Trail held a public meeting in Branford on March 26 to update the community on plans for the town’s newest trail section and introduce the leader of a nascent bicycle-and-pedestrian advocacy group. About 20 people attended the event, held at Branford’s Blackstone Library, with many offering support and suggesting ways to make the town more bike-friendly.

SGT's Jack Wood displays maps of the new Tabor section of trail (Branford Eagle photo).

SGT’s Jack Wood displays maps of the Tabor section of trail, scheduled to open in the fall (Branford Eagle photo).

SGT Chair Judy Miller provided an overview of the Shoreline Greenway Trail project, noting benefits to walkers, cyclists, the community and region. “Biking brings economic vitality into the centers of towns,” she noted.

Miller updated the audience on the nearly ¾-mile-long Tabor section, while SGT’s Jack Wood showed maps and engineering plans for that section, which is scheduled to open in the fall and provide a 1½-mile link connecting downtown Branford with Pine Orchard and Stony Creek.

Frank Gasparro, a Branford newcomer, described Branford in Motion, which will advocate for safe walking and cycling and explore ways to increase biking opportunities in town. The group’s initial work includes assessing the interest in bike lanes and the installation of more bike racks and stands throughout town.

Good News in Branford

Good news!  The preliminary design plan for the Shoreline Greenway Trail on the Tabor property, known as Segment B-3,  has been approved by the Department of Transportation, and the Town of Branford will hold a Public Hearing to present the design to the public for comment

Wednesday, October 19th, 2016 at 7:00 p.m.              

                              Fire Headquarters meeting Room at 45 North Main Street 

Shoreline  Greenway Trail is excited that this project is moving forward.  Using state and federal funding, this off-road walking and biking  trail  will connect Tabor Drive to Pine Orchard Road along a beautiful wooded area that includes Chet’s Pond.  Crossing Pine Orchard Road, the trail will connect to the Pine Orchard Birch Road section of the Shoreline Greenway Trail.  These trail sections will be one of the few in the town of Branford  that provide handicapped access to nature.

Work Party 1 (3)For many years now, Shoreline  Greenway Trail volunteers have worked to maintain  a temporary trail that has been used  for our First Saturday Walks and for the students at the Walsh Middle School  to enjoy this beautiful setting.  And now that the Town’s Ecology Park is nearby, along with the FSW BranfordBranford Trail and Branford Land Trust property, the new trail will provide further access to a wonderful wilderness area within walking and biking distance of the Branford town center. This setting is virtually  unique along the Shoreline. Branford residents can be proud of it.

Our thanks to the Town of Branford and especially to Janice Plaziak, Town Engineer, who has spent valuable time working with the state and Shoreline  Greenway Trail to bring about this outcome.

We  encourage you to attend this meeting so that you can see the design plan and ask any questions you may have. It is your support and encouragement that  has brought us all to this exciting point.


Branford Volunteer Cleans up Nature’s Garden.

Branford Nature's Garden before Clean-up

Nature’s Garden before Clean-up

Our thanks go to Branford volunteer, Jamie Dean, for cleaning up Nature’s Garden!

In Branford, there is an area known as Nature’s Garden that is adjacent to the Shoreline Greenway Trail between Pine Orchard Road and Birch Road.  This outdoor environmental study habitat was organized by dozens of volunteers, and aided by donations from Branford businesses, in 1997.  Since then, it has fallen into disrepair.

Enter Jamie Dean, a local landscaper who volunteered his skills, his equipment, and many hours of his time to start the process of reclaiming this wonderful asset to Branford’s school system.

Branford Nature's Garden After Clean-up

Nature’s Garden After Clean-up

The before and after photos tell the whole story.  Jamie rescued native trees and shrubs, originally planted to illustrate tree fruits and berries that feed birds in the autumn, from the invasive species that were killing them, such as multiflora roses.  He also reclaimed a nearby area next to the trail.

The Shoreline Greenway Trail hopes to restore this valuable educational resource as a National Wildlife Habitat,  so that it will be available for Branford’s schoolchildren.  Thank you, Jamie!