The Buffalo Valley Rail Trail is the result of investment by the Lewisburg Area Recreation Authority, Union County, Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Federal Highway Department. After several years of planning and feasibility studies conducted by the county, LARA acquired the right of way from the West Shore Rail Road for the rail line from Northumberland County to Mifflinburg in 2009. The rails were salvaged in 2010 while design was underway for the first phase of the project from 12th St in Lewisburg to 8th St in Mifflinburg. Construction began in the spring of 2011. Phase I, including 9.2 miles of finished trail, trailheads, facilities and parking areas at both ends, and interpretive signage along the route, was completed at the end of October 2011.
The long-awaited introduction of the trail revolutionizes non-motorized transportation and broadens the recreational options immensely in Union County. As the first developed off-road trail in the area, the trail provides an amenity entirely absent until now and becomes a crucial component of the transportation network. Whereas before only the bold could venture on foot or by bike beyond the core residential streets of the central municipalities, there is now a protected, well-designed infrastructure spine available to serve all ages and abilities, whether for recreation or transportation. Paralleling Rt 45, the primary east-west vehicular spine in Union County, the trail has provided our community with another option.
Hundreds of residents and visitors enjoy the scenic 9.2mi completed two years ago. Since then many have asked when the trail will come to the Lewisburg Downtown or the River? Well Some Bucknell Engineering students have collaborated with Larson Design Group using funds from the Susquehanna Greenway to give us some early planning ideas. Read the Presentation for more.