by Susan Cohen
It's meant to be a 425-mile hiking and biking trail through the beauty of the South Carolinian landscape, organized into passages that can be traveled as day trips if you can't make the whole trek in one shot. But currently, only 330 miles are open to the public — with 162 continuous miles in the Lowcountry alone — and there are plenty of gaps that need to be filled before it'll be complete.
Recently, PCF has teamed up with Boeing (who is providing the organization with grant money) to develop a master plan to finish the trail. The grant money helped them hire Alta Planning & Design, a national company that helps develop biking and hiking communities. They're also working with the Mt. Pleasant-based Seamon Whiteside + Associates.
In May, PCF began hosting public planning meetings across the state. On Tues. June 18 from 4-7 p.m., they're inviting Charleston and Berkeley county citizens to give their input on the trail at the Sewee Visitor Center. And don't worry, you don't have to attend the full three hours to get your ideas across. As PCF explains in a press release:
Attendees will learn about the goals of the plan and how to remain involved in the planning process. A presentation will begin at 5:30 pm and "stations" offering information about the existing Palmetto Trail, its many users, and adjacent communities will be available throughout the 4 to 7 p.m. timeframe. The planning team will solicit comments and feedback regarding potential trail routes, user experiences and the future of the Palmetto Trail. Light refreshments are available at each workshop.
For more information on the project, visit the master plan's website.