New York State Department of Environmental Conservation announced the completion of a three-year project to reconstruct 36 bridge crossings along the Brookfield Trail System in the towns of Hamilton and Brookfield, Madison County.
The popular recreation trails provide more than 100 miles of opportunity for hikers, equestrians, snowmobilers, and other outdoor enthusiasts.
DEC designed and constructed these new bridges to protect public safety and provide convenient access for trail users, as well as to help protect the trails and surrounding resources from future extreme weather events and flooding, the department said in its press release.
The three-year, $250,000 bridge replacement project was funded through NY Works as part of Gov. Cuomo's Adventure NY initiative. All construction was completed by DEC Operations staff.
Wooden boardwalks and bridges were replaced after age-related deterioration and flood damage made these structures unsafe. Many of these structures were upgraded to appropriate-sized culverts with earthen crossings to blend with the surroundings and improve natural stream flow even during high water events, including two protected trout streams.
The 100-mile Brookfield Trail System is open free of charge for hiking, horse riding, snowmobiling, cross country skiing, snowshoeing, and mountain biking. Campsites are available at Moscow Hill Assembly Area and Cherry Ridge Camping Area on Charles E. Baker State Forest.
Several trails on Charles E. Baker and Brookfield Railroad are open for ATV use by permit only for people with mobility impairments.
During the State's ongoing response to Covid-19, New Yorkers across the state want and need to get outside for a nature break, which is good for physical and mental health.