Commissioners Seeking Property to Extend Greene River Trail

Washington PA Observer-Reporter
21 October 2015
By Bob Niedbala

WAYNESBURG – Greene County Commissioners plan to take action today to acquire property to develop the next leg of Greene River Trail, which has remained at its current length for the last eight years.

At their agenda meeting Wednesday, commissioners agreed to place on the agenda for today’s meeting a motion to begin condemnation proceedings to acquire the property from a private owner south of the existing trail.

The property, an abandoned railroad bed, is 7,792.14 feet in length and 20 feet in width and is owned by Leonard Svetz.

The county was unable to come to agreement with Svetz on a purchase price and as a result, will proceed with condemnation, county Chief Clerk Jeff Marshall said.

The trail, which runs along the bank of the Monongahela River, is now 5.128 miles long and stretches from the trail head at Greene Cove Yacht Club in Millsboro to the site of the old Crucible Ferry.

About five years ago, the county acquired about 3,500 feet of the former railroad property directly south of the existing trail from the Rices Landing Boat Club, said Jake Blaker, director of the county’s Department of Parks and Recreation.

Once it acquires Svetz’s land, the county will be able to extend the length of the trail by about 11,300 feet, or 2.1 miles, Blaker said.

“It’s a beautiful area,” Blaker said. The property runs along the river and once developed, it will be one of the longest straight stretches along the trail, he said.

The extension will bring the trail to an area near the intersection of Jacobs Ferry Road and Stringtown Road.

“Where this will end will take us closer to Carmichaels and bring us out to another trail head,” Blaker said. A small trail head is planned for the end on this extension, he said.

The trail was last extended by about 1.7 miles in 2007, from a point near Rices Landing south through the properties of the former Dilworth and Crucible mines.
Marshall said land the county plans to acquire is appraised at less than $10,000.

The condemnation proceeding will be handled by Pollock Morris LLC, which began working for the county on the project more than five years ago, Marshall said. This was before Chuck Morris, a member of the law firm, became commissioner. Morris abstained on the vote to place the motion on the agenda for today’s meeting.

The county will later apply for grants to construct the extension. It had to have control of the property before it could make application for grant funding, Marshall said.