Capital Area Greenbelt Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit 100% volunteer organization. CAGA’s mission is to improve, maintain and protect the Capital Area Greenbelt in the Harrisburg region. CAGA is leading the restoration of the Paxtang Parkway with many partners. 

Before Image of Paxtang Parkway

BEFORE PHOTO: 

Same area pictured in the heading. If the erosion at this bend had been ignored, the trail would have collapsed. 

The Paxtang Parkway is one of the forested legs of the Greenbelt. The 1.2-mile Paxtang Parkway parallels the Parkway Creek through a long-preserved wooded valley. The trail was once a scenic vehicle route when it was built in the early 1900s, but today this segment  is an off-road transportation link that is reserved  exclusively for use by pedestrians and cyclists. 

Problem: The Parkway trail surface is nearly a  century old. Trail culverts and piping were constructed when farmland surrounded the Parkway. Increased storm intensity and elevated runoff volumes from development cause serious stream  erosion throughout the Paxtang Parkway. 

Solution Accomplished

Erosion and flooding threaten to wash out the Parkway Trail, expose sanitary sewers embedded below the trail,  and rupture the sewer encasements crossing the  stream. The trail surface is deteriorating requiring  trail users be attentive to avoid degenerating areas. Accelerated erosion of the stream banks is releasing  large quantities of sediment, threatening the downstream health of Spring Creek, which supports a wild trout population and, ultimately, the  Chesapeake Bay.

Solutions: Starting Fall 2024...

Trail Diet:  

The trail will be narrowed from its current +/- 20-foot width to a 12-foot wide meandering natural path. The 1.2- mile trail surface will be restored and  repaved with smooth asphalt. 

Sewer Repairs: 

Two sanitary sewer encasements are  used as de facto pedestrian bridges.  They offer risky stream crossings and  will likely rupture soon and discharge  sewage into the stream. The sewer  infrastructures will be relocated under  the streambed and a new pedestrian  bridge will provide safe passage for  hikers and cyclists.. 

Want to help?

Fund 

  • Continue Fundraising ( +$600,000 needed )
  • Seek Donations
  • Manage grants

Design  

  • Remainder of trail  improvements 

Construct the fixes 

  • Sanitary sewers 
  • Stormwater culverts • Stream grading &  structures 
  • Landscaping 
  • Trail diet, repairs &  pavement 
  • New pedestrian bridge 

 

Sponsors & Partners 

  • City of Harrisburg 
  • Dauphin County’s Commissioners, Parks &  Recreation, Planning Commission, and Conservation District
  • Capital Region Water
  • Lower Paxton, Susquehanna, & Swatara Townships
  • Paxtang & Penbrook  Boroughs
  • Penbrook Leos
  • Skelly and Loy, Inc. • Landstudies, Inc.
  • Kline Foundation
  • Penn State Extension,  Master Watershed Steward  Program
  • Chesapeake Bay Trust • Scottsdale Apartments • Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Ten Million Trees Program • Stabler Foundation
  • McCormick Family Foundation
  • Lancaster Solid Waste Management Authority
  • Trout Unlimited, Doc  Fritchey Chapter
  • Susquehanna Area Mountain Biking Association