The State of Maryland has provided $10 million to expand the Powerline Trail, a multi-use trail built within the Pepco right-of-way, to complete what will eventually be a 13-mile trail from South Germantown Recreational Park to Cabin John Regional Park in Bethesda.
Montgomery Parks, part of the Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission, received the funding that will help complete the trail. The initial portion, a six-mile, single-track, natural-surface trail, opened in 2018 and connects South Germantown Recreational Park to Muddy Branch Stream Valley Park in North Potomac. The remaining seven miles will be a paved trail from the Muddy Branch Trailhead into Cabin John Regional Park.
“We are thrilled to see this important east-west trail connection coming to fruition thanks to the support of Pepco, Delegate Marc Korman, the entire Montgomery County Delegation and the Mid-Atlantic Off-Road Enthusiasts,” said Casey Anderson, chair of the Montgomery County Planning Board. “The County trail network has been invaluable during this pandemic as it has provided residents with the opportunity to get outdoors, get some exercise and enjoy nature,”
The hard surface portion of the trail will be the largest expansion of the County’s paved trail network in recent history, providing both recreational and transportation benefits.
The Powerline Trail was envisioned in 2015 during the merger of Pepco and Exelon as a measure to give back to the community by using the power corridors for public trails. The trail is the first project of its kind in Montgomery County.
The State funding will allow detailed design for the ultimate trail, and construction of the highest priority segments, beginning in 2022.