CSX donates 130 acres to 9/11 National Memorial Trail Alliance

Written by Carolina Worrell
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CSX has agreed to donate 130 acres of undeveloped land in southwestern Pennsylvania to the September 11th National Memorial Trail Alliance, a not-for-profit organization formed to establish a memorial trail to link the memorial sites at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and the Flight 93 National Memorial, the railroad announced on Sept. 9, 2015. The donation provides land that will help the alliance build a 7-mile portion of an off-road multipurpose trail between the Great Alleghany Passage Trail in Garrett, Penn., and the Flight 93 Memorial in Shanksville, Penn.

Michael Ward, Chairman and CEO of CSX, said, “CSX is honored to make this contribution to the September 11th National Trail Alliance, helping to build the connection between these three important historic sites. Just as we connect America’s businesses and consumers in support of the nation’s prosperity, we’re pleased to have a role in building the network of trails that will link these memorials to the heroes of September 11th.”

The properties CSX is contributing to the 9/11 trail traverse approximately 5.6 miles of undeveloped land between Garrett and Berlin, Penn., and four miles of undeveloped land between Berlin and Shanksville, Penn. The properties were previously used as a right-of-way for railroad operations. CSX has owned many of the properties for 145 years or more, since the 1870s.

The September 11th National Memorial Trail is a 1,300-mile commemorative trail linking the National September 11th Memorial at the World Trade Center site in New York City, the Pentagon Memorial in Arlington County, VA and the Flight 93 National Memorial in Somerset County, PA. The Trail is a unique tribute to those who so tragically perished on September 11, 2001. It is envisioned as a multi-use corridor for hiking and bicycling and features an accompanying quiet, back-road motor route for driving, motorcycling and public and tour transportation. The Trail also has been designed to link historic points of interest along the route where the resiliency and courage inherent in American character have shone throughout our history.

David G. Brickley, President of the September 11th National Memorial Trail Alliance, said, “The Alliance thanks CSX for its outstanding support in this national trail initiative and for the commitment its employees share to honoring the Heroes of September 11, 2001, and the communities in which the victims, their families and first responders lived and worked. CSX’s generosity has been critical to our ability to complete this key segment of the September 11th National Memorial Trail to the Flight 93 Memorial in Pennsylvania and considerably strengthens our ability to maintain it for those who will enjoy and learn from the Trail for generations to come.”

Rep. Bill Shuster, whose congressional district includes the CSX property, said, “The September 11th National Memorial Trail Alliance is demonstrating tremendous resolve in building a pathway to connect these three historic sites. Now, thanks to CSX’s generous contribution, an additional link in the 1,100-mile network is an important step closer to being completed.”

Brickley added, “The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and Somerset County have also been terrific partners on this national project. It is our goal to open this segment of the trail by September 2016, which is the 100th anniversary of the founding of the National Park Service and the 15th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack.”

The September 11th Trail National Memorial Trail Alliance was formed in 2004, is a not-for-profit, 501 (C) 3 Organization. More information about the organization and the trail is available at www.911trail.org.

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