This summer, Arcadia’s Facilities Department (Aramark) is working tirelessly to clear new recreational trails that will eventually connect to the Cresheim Bike Path. Tapping into the University’s previously unused grounds and resources, the project will add miles of continuous recreational trails and green space for all to enjoy.
Part safety initiative, part campus beautification effort, the project began several years ago when Arcadia purchased the Konami Property, located on the corner of Church and Waverly roads. As it was difficult to access the property due to the presence of Tacony Creek and a very narrow shoulder on Church Road, it became clear that Arcadia needed to construct a pedestrian bridge.
When presented to Cheltenham Township, the project proposal precipitated a discussion of how to merge Arcadia’s scheme with the community’s efforts to make bicycles a viable form of alternative transportation in and around Glenside. Always looking to strengthen ties between the University and the Glenside community, Arcadia administration seized the opportunity to connect the proposed Cresheim Trail. Not only will it increase the connectivity between the University and Glenside community, but the bike path also will play a role in connecting the Delaware River Heritage Trail system with the Wissahickon Creek and Fairmount Park.
The construction of the new bridge was completed in January 2011. Since then, Facilities has been making steady progress clearing the refuse, debris and dense growth of invasive species on the Konami property. Led by Tim Gallagher, Facilities Supervisor, the team includes Ed Adams, Dean Brettell, Victor Gullo, Mike Korolishin, Chris Macchi, Mike Mulligan, Rob Nolan, Brian Stewart and work-study students Ryan Bross, Eric Elie, Jared Greene, Pedro Leal, Brody Rosenfeld, Joe Smeck and Mike Wallover.
A new park area is already complete, beautifully landscaped, and includes benches and grilling sites. There is also a green space for athletics practice or other campus recreation. The team currently is working on the fringes of campus to make way for Arcadia's new recreational trails.
The completed path will provide a several continuous loops of campus, which will lead into the wooded area to the rear of the Murphy hall parking area, around the baseball fields and connect with the new park and bridge area. It will be paved with eco-friendly lime filings and be wheelchair accessible.
“This is a great addition to Arcadia and serves as the first step in creating a longer bike and jogging pathway through and around the Campus,” says Tom Macchi, Associate Vice President of Facilities and Capital Planning. “The area around the brook was so dense that you couldn’t see anything. Many of our alumni didn’t even know that the Tacony Creek ran through the campus. Now we’ll all be able to enjoy it."