~Submitted by Emily Prince, Chair, Energy & Sustainability Committee
On August 18th the Energy and Sustainability Committee unanimously voted to endorse the Special Town Meeting article related to ensuring the full right of way for the proposed Reformatory Branch trail improvements can be secured. The Committee’s position is consistent with the one taken in advance of the March 2022 Annual Town Meeting. This past March, the Committee unanimously endorsed the two articles at the Annual Town Meeting related to enhancing the usability and safety of this trail.
The Committee’s decision to support the Reformatory Branch trail improvements centered around increasing energy-friendly alternative transportation options within the community. Prior to voting to endorse Article 10, Committee members noted the importance of continuing the town’s progress towards improving more environmentally friendly transportation alternatives for the citizens of the town. They noted the strong year-round accessible link this project will add to the existing bike and walking options in town, in particular for west Bedford. Several committee members expressed their familiarity with the limitations of the existing trail as a year-round viable safe, accessible, and energy-friendly transportation alternative. The value of continuing the development of such alternative transportation options by extending successful existing links was also highlighted. It was noted that just as the existing Minuteman Bikeway provides a viable automobile alternative link to Lexington, Arlington, and Cambridge, the Reformatory Branch could be the first step in adding west Bedford and Concord to that network.
Please join the Energy and Sustainability Committee in voting yes on Article 10 for a sustainable, energy-friendly, safe, accessible pathway in our community.