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Work progresses on Stafford's historic trail loop from Belmont to Ferry Farm.
The Belmont-Ferry Farm trail ends abruptly now in the eastern part of Pratt Park just before it meets River Road.
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Date published: 5/1/2012
If she has time, Diana Jagoda hopes to use Stafford County's newest trails.
"I was just thinking today it'd be nice to have a path along there," Jagoda said about River Road, along the Rappahannock River, which she drives regularly as a cut-through between State Route 3 and U.S. 1.
And in a few years the county's Belmont to Ferry Farm trail will also meander along the river.
Only a few pieces of the eventual 4.02-mile trail are complete now, though.
The newest addition is sidewalk improvements along Washington Street near Belmont, and in front
A ribbon cutting will take place at 4:30 p.m. today at Amy's Cafe, 103 W. Cambridge St.
Falmouth was once a booming port town. But more recently the narrow sidewalks along Washington Street were crumbling, if they even existed.
It wasn't safe for pedestrians, county staff had said.
Phase 5 of the trail system project included sidewalk repairs there for $210,000.
The sidewalk doesn't go all the way to Gari Melchers Home and Studio at Belmont yet, but visitors can still make their way to the cafe and other stops in Falmouth bottom.
"There's not a lot of sidewalks in Stafford and we need more," said Amy Johnson, owner of Amy's Cafe. "Hopefully it brings more people here."
A few new customers have already come to the restaurant because of the path, Johnson said.
"Anything to add to the bottom is a wonderful thing," she said.
Still to come are more safety improvements to benefit runners, walkers and cyclists, including a path under the Falmouth Bridge. Parking areas are also planned.
Meanwhile, work is also progressing on Phase 3, in the middle of the 4.02-mile trail. Construction crews are building a curving paved trail down the hill from St. Clair Brooks Memorial Park that will link with the Falmouth bottom path and sidewalks.
Supervisors broke ground in Brooks Park last September on the 0.89-mile section, which cost $875,000.
The eastern side of the trail now connects to the existing path within Pratt Park, which runs alongside the mile-long gravel loop circling athletic fields, passing by the YMCA on Butler Road.
In addition to dedicating the Falmouth sidewalks, Stafford County's Board of Supervisors will have a groundbreaking today for another project.
Expansion of the Virginia Railway Express Leeland Station commuter lot will begin soon.
The groundbreaking will take place at 3:30 p.m. at the lot, located at 275 Leeland Road.