The Spruce Railroad Trail served an era when timber harvesting fed wood to make WWI airplanes. It has two tunnels and is along the shore of Lake Crescent in the Olympic National Park. It is a four-mile section of the 135-mile Olympic Discovery Trail, and it is the western end of the 3,700-mile Great American Rail-Trail. (Linda Hanlon)

The Urbanist Podcast is on summer break so we thought we’d share with you a guest podcast on a topic near and dear to hearts of many urbanists and bike advocates.

On Resources Radio‘s From Rails to Trails, Peter Harnik discusses how nonprofits, local stakeholders, and policymakers convert abandoned railroad lines into multi-use recreational trails with Resources Radio Senior Fellow Margaret Walls. Harnik is cofounder of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, and founder of the Center for City Park Excellence.

Washington State’s Burke-Gilman Trail is one of the earliest rail-trails, and the Palouse to Cascades Trail and the Olympic Discovery Trail, which will eventually expand to connect via a coast-to-coast trail, are important examples of the challenges and successes of this active transportation and popular outdoor recreation resource.

 Republished with permission from Resources Radio, which is produced by Elizabeth Wason, with music by Daniel Raimi.

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Urbanist Staff