Cross Vermont Trail Bridge and Parking Area Built in East Montpelier

by Greg Western, Executive Director of CVTA 
courtesy photo | The Winooski Bridge site on the Cross Vermont Trail crosses the river in East Montpelier. The trail near Route 2.

EAST MONTPELIER – Cross Vermont Trail Association (CVTA) has concluded the construction season with the completion of the Winooski Bridge on the Cross Vermont Trail in East Montpelier.

In July, the 200-foot-long bicycle and pedestrian bridge was hoisted over the river. Since then, contractors have worked to finish the abutments and structural details, which are now done. Meanwhile, numerous other elements of the larger trail project have been completed, leading to the bridge from each direction. A ribbon-cutting ceremony officially opening the bridge and the first section of new trail to public use is planned for May 2022. 

This bridge is the keystone piece of the Cross Vermont Trail Association-led effort to connect the Montpelier Bike Path across East Montpelier up to where the existing rail trail begins at Vermont Route  14, and ultimately to connect the Barre-Montpelier area into a statewide multi-use path network.

Travelers along Route 2 in East Montpelier have seen orange “road construction ahead” signs all this past year. In addition to the new bridge, contractors have built a trailhead parking area, located one-third mile east of the bridge on Route 2. To link the parking area to the bridge, contractors rebuilt a 650-foot section of guardrail and road shoulder along Route 2 to make room for a fully separate trail, between the road and the river on the outside of the guardrail.

Cross Vermont Trail staff are working now and next year to build remaining trail segments between the completed contractor projects; volunteers are invited to help. In addition to the Cross Vermont Trail itself, there will be two paths linking with U-32 School, one for mountain bikes and one that is fully accessible. CVTA is also partnering with the Northern Forest Canoe Trail to make connections to the river from the trail, for portaging and water access.

In all, 2.5 miles of trail will be built between Gallison Hill Road and Route 2 by late 2022. By the end of 2023, an additional 2.5 miles will be built to finish the project up to Route 14.

Updates on the entire project are posted at crossvermont.org with information on how the public can get involved, volunteer or donate.

The mission of the Cross Vermont Trail Association is to create and maintain a multi-use trail across Vermont through the Winooski and Wells River Valleys between Lake Champlain and the Connecticut River.