Rail recycling is a boon for the city’s newest trail

A “fortuitous meeting” of city and nonprofit has brought a new 2.5-mile trail to Brisbane with estimated savings to taxpayers of nearly $3 million.

By contracting with the Reno, Nev.-based Iron Horse Preservation Society, Inc., a nonprofit organization that removed two miles of old railroad track and reused half of it, Brisbane cut costs on the trail project, which was once estimated to cost $3 million, to less than $2,000 for Brisbane residents.

The central location of the trail in the nearly 4,000-person city will provide greater access to all and an added benefit to employees in the area looking to exercise during the workday, a city official said.

“It was a real fortuitous meeting of interest,” said City Manager Clay Holstine.

With Iron Horse salvaging the track from the old rail line, costs to the taxpayers were cut way down as track removal was going to cost the city at least $300,000, said Jim Hattrup, the project manager for Iron Horse.

The reused track will help construct a 20-mile line between Carson City and Virginia City as a restoration project to replicate a shortline built in the mother-load silver mining period of the early 20th Century.

“We’re in the sweet spot with what their plans were and the materials we could provide,” Hattrup said.

Beginning across Park Lane from City Hall, the Crocker Park Recreational Trail winds its way along the old Southern Pacific rail line. That line became overgrown and impassable in some places after the city acquired the land from Caltrain in the mid 1990s, said Jim Skeels, Brisbane Parks and Recreation director.

The master plan for the trail called for paving but the trail will be made of crushed granite, called “ballast,” so users can walk and ride a bike over it but probably not rollerblade, Skeels said. The ballast was spread across the 10-foot width of the trail and then compacted.

“We’ll see how the public responds to it. If they’re comfortable with it, then we’ll leave it. If they want asphalt, then (the granite) will work as a foundation” for paving, Skeels said.

As recently as a year ago the trail was impassable in parts and walkers or joggers would have found “trash-laden, uneven ground with railroad tracks in it,” the parks director said.

When the trail officially opens Dec. 9 — there are still some amenities to install — there will be benches, trash cans, signage, mutt-mitt dispensers and five new crosswalks as the trail circles the industrial area.

dsmith@examiner.com

newsUS

Just Posted

San Francisco Giants manager Gabe Kapler, pictured in July at Oracle Park, says team members simultaneously can be “measured and calm” and “looking to push the accelerator.” (Chris Victorio/Special to The Examiner)
How Gabe Kapler sets the tone for Giants’ success with strategy, mindset

‘There’s no doubt in my mind that he’s the hands-down manager of the year’

Artist Agnieszka Pilat, pictured with Spot the Robot Dog from Boston Robotics, has a gallery show opening at Modernism. (Courtesy Agnieszka Pilat)
Screenshots of VCs, Kanye and tech parties by the Bay

In this week’s roundup, Ben Horowitz’s surprising hip-hop knowledge and the chic tech crowd at Shack15

Speaker of the Parliament of Mongolia Gombojav Zandanshatar said his country and San Francisco face similar challenges on issues including COVID recovery and climate change. (Kevin N. Hume/The Examiner)
Mongolian leaders meet with tech, film leaders on city tour

‘I really want San Franciscans to meet the new Mongolian generation’

If he secured a full term in the Senate, Newsom would become the most powerful Californian Democrat since Phil Burton at the height of his career, or maybe ever. <ins>(Kevin Hume/The Examiner)</ins>
San Francisco 49ers quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo (10), seen during a team practice, connected on 17 of 25 passes in a Week 1 victory over the Detroit Lions. (Courtesy Terrell Lloyd, San Francisco 49ers)
Jimmy vs. Trey: The NFL’s most ridiculous QB controversy

Let’s not forget who led the 49ers to the Super Bowl

Most Read