MAKING A COMMUNITY CONNECTION!
The Connect to Walk and Bike Committee is working around Morris County to partner with communities to recommend connections to parks, community centers, businesses, schools, and transportation locations. Although often named one of the top 10 richest counties in the U.S., nearly 1 in 10 households earn less than $25,000. This figure compares poorly to the figure provided by the United Way of Northern NJ to sustain a family of four at $67,800. Connect to Walk and Bike seeks to recommend resources for walking and biking in order to provide options for physical activity, enhanced economic activity, job access, and social connectivity. Although aspects of the effort can be expensive, the committee seeks to provide a variety of options in the final report provided to the community. An example is in the Borough of Wharton. A presentation of the project in the community was recently made to the Town Council. A power point and summary of findings was reviewed. Council members engaged in the presentation with comments and updates. They will be including the recommendation into the community trail plan as appropriate. A key resource already being highlighted by the community is the Morris Canal. A historic waterway, mostly covered now, that brought coal from Easton PA through northern New Jersey to Jersey City (New York connections). By using the proposed Canal Greenway, Wharton can accomplish benefits for their citizens as well as welcoming tourists. The proposal in Wharton seeks to connect to trails already in existence or planned in the community, and to communities along its borders, including Dover, Rockaway, and Mine Hill. Efforts that could ultimately be used as the foundation for a county wide trail system. The presentation to Wharton included the results of a walkability audit, windshield survey, photographs, demographic maps, and prioritized recommendations.
About the Grantee
As a second round grantee, the Connect to Walk and Bike team has been working for several years with willing partner communities in Morris County to assess and recommend connections for walking and biking. The community is provided with maps, demographics, photographs, and a final report. Projects have been completed in Morristown and Wharton. Current partners are Dover and Rockaway.
Cohort: North 1
Funder: NJ Partnership for Healthy Kids