LONDONDERRY — The town's trail system is moving forward as work is underway on the Phase 5 portion.
This 1-mile section in North Londonderry begins near the Londonderry Senior Center, follows the abandoned rail corridor and runs near the scenic Little Cohas Marsh between Mammoth and Harvey roads, ending at the parameter of the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport.
Trailways' Pollyann Winslow said Phase 5 is a very wooded area and much cleanup and clearing needed to be done. Crews also spread gravel and grubbed the path, pulling out deep roots that would deter the clean, smooth path work.
"The weather has been good," Winslow said. "We are making excellent progress."
The trails got a big vote of support at the polls this past March.
Londonderry residents gave a whopping 77 percent of voter support to the trail system, approving a warrant article to help the next phases move forward.
Trail volunteers are already looking ahead.
Thanks to grant Transportation Alternative Program, or TAP, funding, Londonderry was also earmarked to receive $800,000 to build its 1-mile Phase 6 portion of the community system, that is planned to run along the sides of Harvey, Webster and Grenier Field roads near the Manchester-Boston Regional Airport.
After that, Winslow said it's not quite a done deal to see how Londonderry's trails will eventually connect in the other direction to Derry, as that community is still undergoing work to support the town's trails while the planned Exit 4A project is expected to move through.
Phase 5 work is expected to be complete by Nov. 1, Winslow said. There will be an official ribbon-cutting to honor this portion of completed trail.
Winslow said since Phase 5 starts in close proximity to the Londonderry Senior Center, she also hopes it will give elder residents an opportunity to enjoy a walk on the trail.
"It will be a new place for people to take a walk," she said, adding once complete, Phase 5 will have interactive signs noting specific spots of interest along the way, including Little Cohas Marsh and other valuable wetland areas.
Then in the spring, Trailways will also host its annual Family Fun Day to give families a chance to get out and see the trails in person and view all the progress.
Winslow added Family Fun Day is a way for residents to see the fruits of their support at the ballot box.
Winslow credits all the volunteers, especially Trailway's president Bob Rimol, for their tireless work and commitment to the community's trails.
"It's been a fun committee to be part of," she added.