Crossing a small stream with a multi-use trail may involve installing a culvert or constructing a short boardwalk. However, a rail-trail may require the restoration and repurposing of century-old railroad trestles. This can be an expensive and structurally challenging undertaking, but once complete these features often become trail highlights and landmarks.
The rail trail in Newton County includes four trestles in various states of repair. Our goal is to reconstruct them all for pedestrian and bike use. We are currently in the process of an engineering evaluation of each of these trestles so that we can set priorities and budget funds. In the meantime, we have an obligation to restrict public access to ensure safety.
From west to east, the trestles include:
Dried Indian Creek Trestle - Between Emory Street and Pace Street in Covington, this 250-foot trestle passes north of Covington city hall and behind Morgan Plaza and the Covington fire station. When opened, this trail segment will connect the square to the commercial area along Hwy 278 and Turner Lake Road.
Alcovy River Trestle - Two miles south of the Eagle Drive between East End Road and Old Starrsville Road, this nearly 400-foot trestle provides a scenic view of a section of the Alcovy River that is otherwise inaccessible, except by canoe.
West Bear Creek Trestle - Between Dixie Road and Elks Club Road, this short but high trestle crosses West Bear Creek where the creek cascades over a granite outcropping.
East Bear Creek Trestle - The East Bear Creek trestle is 1/8 of a mile east of Macedonia Road. When open, this trestle will make accessible a continuous 4-1/2 mile trail section from West Bear Creek, through Mansfield, to Beaver Park and Ziegler Road.
Converting these trestles to trail use is a huge undertaking, and we’re going to need dollars to make it happen. We are in the process of seeking grant funding. However, donations from a variety of sources, including individuals, small businesses and corporations, will be needed to reconstruct the trestles and make the rail trail a reality.