By Ryan Cornell
Warren County is applying for federal funding assistance through the Transportation Alternatives Program. The funding would support the design and construction of the Appalachian Trail Connector, a proposed shared-use path south of Front Royal.
The two-mile trail would be built on the east side of Remount Road, separated from the road by graded shoulders. It would start at the Front Royal town limits near Rappawan Inc. and end where the Appalachian Trail crosses Route 522.
Warren County Grants and Special Coordinator Brandy Rosser said the trail would be between 8 and 10 feet wide.
She said the paved trail would be approved for bicyclists and pedestrians and would serve the Harmony Hollow, Lake Front Royal and Point-O-Woods subdivisions, though the construction start date is "easily a couple years off."
"The Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute is up there, there are 700 homes up there. Really it's just us providing an alternate means of transportation," Rosser said. "If they want to walk, they can have a safe place to do it."
She said backpackers hiking the Appalachian Trail, who often travel into town to stock up on supplies, can use the trail to get to Food Lion.
"They're just walking on the side of the road right now," she said.
If the funding is accepted, the county will be required to provide a 20 percent match. The estimated cost of the project is being developed.
A public hearing to discuss the application and gather input from the community is scheduled for 7:30 p.m., Oct. 15 at the Warren County Government Center.
Contact staff writer Ryan Cornell at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or firstname.lastname@example.org