Anne Arundel County was awarded an $80,000 State of Maryland Kim Lamphier Bikeways Grant in 2019 to study a westward extension of the existing Poplar Trail, which currently runs along Poplar Avenue from Taylor Avenue to Admiral Drive. The study is underway with collaboration among the County, the City of Annapolis, MDOT SHA, and biking and walking advocates.
The current Poplar Trail provides a separated bicycle and pedestrian alternative to the high-vehicle traffic sections of West Street (MD 450), but the current western terminus leave no alternatives for cyclists to continue westward without using busy roads that have no separated bicycle facilities. The proposed western extension would provide dedicated connections between downtown Annapolis and the Parole area with many significant employment, residential, shopping, healthcare, education, and tourism destinations. This corridor is also used by many local residents and employees for whom personal vehicle transportation is not an option.
The Poplar Trail is part of an envisioned Anne Arundel County Trail Network. An extension would provide improved regional connectivity to other nearby recreational trails such as the planned South Shore Trail, which will connect Annapolis to Odenton and other points to the north and west. The Poplar trail also serves as part of the East Coast Greenway, a 3,000-mile pedestrian/bicycle route from Maine to Florida.
The first phase of the feasibility study has identified three potential trail route alternatives between Admiral Drive and existing pedestrian/bicycle facilities along MD 2. The study team seeks public input on these alternatives and how they would be used by pedestrians and bicyclists for both transportation and recreation. In light of COVID-19, public input can be provided through an online web page or via email, phone, or mail. The public is encouraged to learn more and provide input by visiting www.aacounty.org/departments/public-works/engineering/capital_projects and selecting “Poplar Trail Extension – Feasibility Study”.
Comments and questions can also be sent by email to Adam Greenstein, Project Manager, at [email protected] or by calling 443-569-9587. Anyone needing materials in alternative formats can contact County DPW Customer Relations by phone at 410-222-7582 or by email at [email protected]. TTY users, please call via Maryland Relay 7-1-1.
The public comment period is open until 1/4/2021.