It’s time to speak up on behalf of a unique opportunity that will increase economic security and the wellbeing of citizens in our county!
We can connect into an extensive regional network of trails by building the only Class 1 (paved) trail to provide safe access into the foothills. Adding to the El Dorado paved trail while maintaining our existing dirt trail will allow us to attract more businesses, jobs, and tourists to our communities.
El Dorado County First on the Sacramento Placerville Transportation Corridor (SPTC)
We, the residents of El Dorado County (EDC,) and surrounding supporters respectfully request that the EDC Board of Supervisors (BOS) make it a priority to create the El Dorado Class 1 Trail to the county line, while maintaining the existing dirt trail, in the most cost effective manner to taxpayers. We want this for the reasons of resident’s health, safe pathways, non-motorized transportation, economic benefits, and regional connections.
We acknowledge the compromise that was reached in 2011 and approved by the EDC BOS, which allows for excursion train use on the 8 miles from Shingle Springs to Diamond Springs. It provides a place for both trails and trains to move forward. We ask that the current EDC BOS honor this agreement.
Furthermore, we request the BOS guarantee the success of both our local train and trails by denying the Folsom Train access to EDC at the county line. The Folsom train running into El Dorado County from Folsom benefits Folsom mainly and threatens both our museum excursion train program and development of our trails:
It is vital that the County support its own operation – the El Dorado Western Railroad. Two operations on the same corridor will compete for passengers, funding, and volunteer labor.
If the class 1 trail is not able to use the bridges, cuts and fills as previously negotiated, the cost to build the trail could increase by as much as $28.5 million according to a recent study and will probably never be completed because of the high cost.
A recent study estimated that a paved Class 1 trail from Folsom to Placerville would generate $12 million in annual economic benefits, and this figure does not include a "quality of place" asset that will attract young people, and create the jobs of the future.
If the class 1 trail development is forced off the rail bed for the entire 25 miles, 70% of the single track dirt trail will be lost, reducing mountain bike and equestrian opportunities.
El Dorado County was awarded $2.64 million in transportation grant funding intended to provide non-motorized transportation on the SPTC. To date, 20 years later, the purpose of the grant funds has not been realized.
The Folsom train used to run in the area designated for excursion trains. They could not work out a profit sharing agreement that was beneficial for the museum program. If Folsom wants to run in EDC, it is only reasonable that they renegotiate with the museum program to run in the allowed section. This would insure any economic benefits realized from excursion train use go to EDC.
El Dorado County NEEDS economic security! It’s time to build a future for our residents, by creating a county that will attract businesses that offer higher paying jobs than retail (where do you envision your children working in EDC?), creating a network of healthy trails for travel and recreation, and by connecting into an extensive regional network of trails that will bring the bicycle boom of tourists “wallets on wheels,” to our communities. El Dorado County has a unique opportunity to build the only class 1 trail providing safe access into the foothills.
Please support El Dorado County interests FIRST on the SPTC!