Tioga County, in conjunction with Clinton and Lycoming counties, has applied for a Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development grant totaling $22,985,629.
Tioga County’s request is for $8,554,139, which will be used toward the $13.5 million total cost to build the Marsh Creek Greenway.
Clinton County is seeking $1,428,514 to build the Bald Eagle Valley Trail, an 11-mile transportation alternative to link local communities in Lock Haven, Castanea Township, Pine Creek Township, Wayne Township and Avis borough to Jersey Shore.
Lycoming County is requesting funds for three projects: $3,145,251 to connect Jersey Shore to the Bald Eagle Valley Trail and Pine Creek Rail Trail, $9,135,000 toward the $9.38 million cost of replacing a culvert under Allegheny Street in Jersey Shore, and $713,725 toward elevating the Lycoming Valley Railroad Bridge to better move goods and minimize travel disruption on the rail line.
Marc Rice, Tioga County risk manager and trail committee member, said the goal of the involved projects is to improve safety, connect to the PCRT and rebuild infrastructure.
According to documents on the county website, www.tiogacountypa.us, there were 78 crashes from 2010-18 on the section of Route 6 between Wellsboro and the trail head, two involving pedestrians resulting in one serious injury. Route 6 is also a part of the U.S. Bike Route.
On average, 6,851 vehicles including 617 trucks use that road daily.
Clinton County documentation showed more than 1,000 crashes in five communities involving 33 pedestrians or cyclists, but no fatalities. In Lock Haven, cyclists were crossing the U.S. Route 220 ramps to access the Bald Eagle Valley Trail. On average, 2919 vehicles use that ramp daily.
Jersey Shore in Lycoming County had 158 crashes involving 33 pedestrians/cyclists with two fatalities. On average, 7,602 vehicles use Allegheny Street each day.
The PCRT extends 62 miles from Delmar Township to Jersey Shore. Part of the grant will resolve connectivity for neighboring boroughs, including Lock Haven, which have lost population.
The trail attracts more than 125,000 visitors each year, according to a 2006 economic impact study. Each community could serve as a gateway community to the PCRT, but lack safe connections, according to the grant application.
Infrastructure in all three communities is aged and in need of repair, according to the application.
The Lawshee Run Culvert in Jersey Shore is undersized, resulting in multiple flooding events and localized failures, potentially causing damage and loss of human life. In 2011 and again in 2016, water filled the basement of the nearby YMCA.
The Lycoming Valley Bridge, which has a clearance of 13 feet 10 inches, has been struck multiple times by vehicle loads, causing damage and disruption of the rail service.
The Charleston Street bridge in Wellsboro is targeted for reconstruction. The bridge length requires trucks 25 feet or longer to take alternate routes to access Route 6 or downtown Wellsboro. The sidewalk is also narrow and unsafe for pedestrians and cyclists,.
In conjunction with the project, two historic truss bridges would be salvaged for use on the Marsh Creek Greenway.