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East Coast Travel Gets Greener

In 1991, a group of civic planners from New York City, Boston, and Washington DC came together with a concept for a hard-surface trail system connecting their three cities. The trail they envisioned would be open to all muscle-powered travel and offer a traffic-free experience, connecting users to a natural environment along the populous Eastern Seaboard. Since then, their goal has expanded to include a 3,000-mile trail network running from Calais, Maine, to Key West, Florida — 1,000 miles longer than the wilder Appalachian Trail, which threads to the west and is roughly parallel to the proposed circuit. The trail organization is called the East Coast Greenway (ECG) and boasts almost 800 miles of official Greenway trails. The ECG hosts many events, including the popular Week-a-Year fund-raising ride, in which participants ride one section of the Greenway each year, completing the entire journey in ten years. The ECG also recently hosted United States Surgeon General Regina M. Benjamin for an evening walk on a North Carolina trail as a way to encourage physical activity among all Americans. Dennis …

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