By Mark Lungariello, Rockland/Westchester Journal News
Original site of article: https://www.lohud.com/story/news/local/westchester/2018/10/09/westchester-oks-8-7-m-update-north-county-trailway/1564040002/
Published 6:00 a.m. ETOct. 9, 2018 | Updated 7:41 a.m. ET Oct. 9, 2018
Westchester County lawmakers will spend $8.7 million to improve the North County Trailway, a 20-mile trail from Putnam County down to Eastview.
It’ll be the first major construction project on the popular trail since it was built in sections in the 1980s.
The county Board of Legislators voted on Oct. 1 to unanimously approve borrowing for the project, which is estimated to last 14 months once it begins.
Safety enhancements will include work to a 500-foot bridge over the Croton Reservoir in Yorktown, which lawmakers said has been used occasionally by thrill seekers to jump into the reservoir. Work will include curved fencing and spikes to discourage people from climbing around the fence.
New York State owns the trailway and Westchester has leased it since 1994, but the county legislature has asked the administration of County Executive George Latimer to try to strike up a deal to take ownership of the property. But lawmakers approved another 25-year extension lease at a $1 cost to Westchester while negotiations are sparked.
Although the state owns the property, the county is responsible for any injury, property damage or death claims. The county approved a $3.2 million settlement with the family of a bicyclist who died after crashing on a stretch of the trailway in Yorktown.
The property runs through the towns of Mount Pleasant, New Castle, Yorktown and Somers. It connects to the South County Trailway, which runs to Westchester’s border with the Bronx. Lawmakers OKed this month another $300,000 for a study and design preparation to an area of the South County Trailway, particularly a stretch near Yonkers’ border with Hastings-on-Hudson.