Following the email correspondence from the Town of Brighton Superintendent of Parks Tim Beeman on Jan 17th, GROC was informed that the Town would be officially closing its park to bicycles citing excessive trail damage due to bikes and pedestrian safety issues. After complying with the Towns request to inform our membership of the closure, GROC representatives requested a meeting with Town officials to address the concerns stated.
On Jan. 28th, GROC representatives Jeff Wright, Adam Reitz, and Mark Rosenzweig, met with the Town’s Commissioner of Public Works and the Superintendent of Parks. There were a variety of issues discussed, but the majority of the conversation focused on several key areas:
- The Town has a 1996 ordinance that states bikes are not allowed in any Brighton Town Parks, unless otherwise authorized.
- It was GROC’s understanding that Corbett’s Glen Park was open to cyclists due to certain language that was written in the Town’s 2004 Master Plan document that refers to the trails as “multi-use,” even though the plan does not specifically cite cycling as a permissible activity.
- The Town’s current administration does not interpret multi-use as inclusive of cycling.
- Any excessive trail damage was not caused solely by cyclists, but by all users as a result of poor trail design, water, and excessive trail use when conditions were delicate.
- In exchange for inclusive access, GROC would be willing to support Corbett’s Glen Park by offering to help educate users on proper trail use and contribute to trail work projects.
- GROC as an organization has contributed over ten thousand hours of volunteer trail work to the 4 parks it has created shared use trails in, equating to over three hundred thousand dollars of value added to those parks. As a respected organization in the community, representing a growing user group, we wish to be included in plans for future park development and when park master plans are up for review.
On Friday Jan 29th the Town of Brighton followed up on the meeting with an email stating that they decided to move forward with officially closing the park to bikes and asked that GROC continue to spread the word of it’s closure. Park personnel will be posting signs at some point in the near future informing park users.
We are disappointed that the Town of Brighton has chosen to exclude cyclists from Corbett’s Glen, but this advocacy effort has brought awareness to Park and Town officials, not only regarding our organization, but the off-road cycling community in general. If you are a Brighton resident and are unhappy with this decision, we would encourage you to contact Town officials to express your disappointment with their multi-use policy, and to advocate for a more inclusive shared-use policy.
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