/ Trails and Recreation,

Public Invited to Give Input on Saluda Grade Trail

Saluda Grade through Campobello.
Saluda Grade through Campobello. Photo by Scott Park/Upstate Forever.

Two public meetings have been scheduled on the Saluda Grade Trail—in Inman, SC on Oct. 17 and Columbus, NC on Oct. 19. The public is invited to drop in, learn more about the proposed trail, and share their goals, ideas, and concerns.  

Kristin Cozza, Trails and Greenways Coordinator for Conserving Carolina says, “We are excited about the opportunity to meet with the community to discuss the next phase of use for this iconic rail corridor.  We want to ensure that this project reflects the community’s vision and priorities.” 

The SC public meeting will be held at the Inman Library on Oct. 17 from 5:30 to 7:30 PM. The NC public meeting will be held at Polk County High School on Oct. 19 from 5:30 to 7:30 PM.  

The meetings will be held drop-in style, so people can come on their own schedule. It is not necessary to stay the entire time. Participants can circulate through various stations, where they will have opportunities to give input on various aspects of the trail. This input will inform the overall vision for the trail.   

The Saluda Grade Trail is a proposed 31-mile rail trail that would follow the route of the historic Saluda Grade rail line. Along the way, it would run through Campobello, Inman, Landrum, Tryon, Saluda, and Zirconia. The Saluda Grade Trail is being spearheaded by a coalition of nonprofits in NC and SC—Conserving Carolina; PAL: Play, Advocate, Live Well; and Upstate Forever. 

The proposed trail is in very early stages and there are still a lot of questions to explore. The Saluda Grade Trail coalition has engaged the firm Traffic Planning and Design, Inc. to conduct an economic impact and feasibility study, which began this summer.  

As part of this study, the coalition is seeking public input about the trail. After the public meetings, there will also be an online survey. If you want to get updates on the trail, including opportunities for future public input, sign up for emails at saludagradetrail.org.  

RSVP for the public meetings is encouraged but not required. You can RSVP here.  

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