TRTC Completes North to South Measurement of the ATT

On August 24th, a volunteer team lead by TRTC's Treasurer, Mike Forte, measured the entire ATT and posted markings at each mile and at each quarter mile. These new markings will allow trail markings on the entire ATT to be based on a single, unitary mileage scheme rather than the prior scheme in which Durham used a north to south scheme and Wake and Chatham employed a south to north scheme.
All miles have been marked with a nail, washer, surveyor's orange paint circle (except mile 0.0 designated with white), and the distance in white. All quarter miles are marked with a dot and the distance in white. The exception to this is in the southern most 8 miles where the surface is granite screening. This area was marked by a 1' wooden stake to the side of the trail with the distance written on it, top painted orange, and the nearest tree (if one was nearby) with a white mark for the quarter miles and a white and orange mark for the whole miles. The total distance from the Durham 0.0 marker to the Apex 0.0 marker is 21.09 miles making the Apex unofficial/official end 21.09 miles. Measuring to the trail head in Apex at the New Hill Olive Chapel Rd parking lot is a distance of 22.08 miles. From the Durham Ballpark to mile 6.5 our measurements were consistent with those done earlier by Durham. From this point south new trail markers reflecting the unitary mileage scheme will be installed by Durham, Cary Parks and Wake County Parks early in 2015.

Teen Arrested for Two Assaults on the ATT

The Durham police have a teen in custody for two assaults on the American Tobacco Trail.
Since the assaults, Durham police have increased patrols along the trail and are askng anyone on the Durham greenways to follow basic safety and crime prevention tips:

Call 911 to report suspicious activity.
Stay aware of surroundings at all times.
Walk in well-lit areas that are not isolated.
If being followed, get away fast, change directions and head toward a safe location.
Carry a personal alarm to deter potential attackers.

Urban Section of ATT to be Studied by Group Chaired by NC Rail-Trails

On March 25th a group consisting of trail advocates, Durham City and County Police, pastors, planners and others concerned with trail safety met at North Carolina Central Univ. to kick off a several month study of the views and perceptions of trail crime on the ATT from the DBAP to NC 54. Researchers from both NCCU and NCSU will be leading teams of grad students in conducting interviews and collecting survey data via questionnaires. Funding for the study was provided by the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation. TRTC will be represented on the group. We'll post any early findings here on our site over the next few months. The study is scheduled to be completed by November 2014. For more on this initial meeting please see this article from WUNC radio:

Break-ins at ATT Trailheads !!!

Since early November, a number of automobile break-ins have been reported at the trailheads at Fayetteville Road in Durham , at the White Oak Church Road in Wake County and at the shoulder parking along Scott-King Road. Police from Durham and from Cary have investigated the incidents reported to them and we understand that surveillance at all three areas has been increased in the last 30 days. ATT users parking at these areas need to be aware of these occurrences and to try avoid leaving valuables in their cars while out on the trail. If you are at one of the ATT access points and see unusual activity or what appears to be a break-in, please do your part and call 911 as soon as you can and take note of any cars or persons at the area that do not appear to be there for use of the trail. For continuing user reports and commentary on this issue, please visit the ATT Facebook page

End of Year Message from TRTC--2013

Wheel stops at Pittard Sears

New wheel stops at the Pittard Sears parking lot in April 2013

Dear Friends of the American Tobacco Trail,

Season’s greetings and happy holidays from Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (TRTC)! It’s almost the end of the year and we would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your help in the past, keep you up to date on what we have been doing this year, and ask you for your continuing support. Any amount you can spare will be welcome as we continue to maintain, promote and improve the American Tobacco Trail and local rail-trails. Here is some of what we have been doing in 2013 with your donations and support:

Special projects: We finished work on and opened the Pittard Sears parking lot just before Christmas last year. The 21 vehicle site, which gets regular use, provides a safe (and legal) alternative to parking on O’Kelly Church Road. Donations to TRTC and funds from the Tobacco Road Marathon were key to allowing this long term ATT facility to happen.
Using a nearby Cary water line and grant funds from REI and the town of Cary, we were able to purchase and install a drinking fountain at this parking lot. The Pittard Sears fountain is the last water stop for southbound users of the ATT. Your donations and grants helped put this in place (and help to pay the water bill). Water is available in all except the winter months.
In 2014 we will continue to work with Durham City and County to develop a new parking facility just east of the trail crossing on Scott King Road. ATT user parking along the road has seen a steady increase for several years and additional capacity is clearly needed. Projected funding from these governments for this lot appears to be quite limited and we will also look for support from other groups such as the NC Horse Council.

Trail safety: We have purchased and installed several Pass with Care signs along the Durham section of the ATT to encourage safe passing by cyclists. Several more will be installed after all sections of the trail near the bridge are completed. We have also been encouraging NCDOT to lower the speed limit to 35 mph on Scott King Road and to install the large warning signs in both directions to alert them to this busy trail crossing. We expect to see signs up early next year.

Trail maintenance: We held several targeted workdays this year. These included cleanup in the area north of Hillside High to Fayetteville Road with Duke MBA students, as well as renewing the gravel surface of the Fayetteville Road parking lot (south of Southpoint Mall), installing a water bar on the access trail, trimming grass at the trailhead, and cleaning up trash items from the lot and connector path. We also held several workdays on the 2.2-mile Eagle Spur rail-trail south of Stagecoach Road, to remove downed trees and carry out trash. Eagle Spur is an unimproved rural wooded trail corridor leading to Jordan Lake on land now managed by the NC Fish and Wildlife Commission; it is popular with fishermen, hunters and hikers.

Trail events: We handed out maps and information at several events this year, including Durham’s Trail Kick-off in April, the Eno River Festival in July and the ATT bridge-over-I-40 Opening Event in October (the bridge, we know you want to know, is now scheduled open to open in early 2014 and we are hopeful that this will be the case). We also volunteered at the Tarwheels Bike Fest in August and the ATT 10 miler running race.

Maps: We are preparing a revision of our ATT map that will be issued by late-Spring 2014. A key part of this effort will be a project by TRTC to measure and mark the entire ATT at quarter mile intervals soon after the I-40 bridge is open for public use. TRTC has taken the lead in getting the governments in Durham, Chatham and Wake Counties to agree to use these measurements as the basis for new, uniform mileage markers on the trail using a unitary north to south system (Mile 0.0 at the DBAP and Mile 22.5 south of US 64).

Other Essential Trail Support: We continue to pay for regular service to the porta-jon that we brought back into service this past July at the Fayetteville Road parking lot south of Southpoint Mall.
In sum, we continue to work as volunteers to make the American Tobacco Trail (and its little sibling the Eagle Spur Trail, originally part of the same rail line) great places to get out and enjoy the outdoors. Your donations help us to build connector trails, do maintenance, create and print trail maps, fund important special projects and provide water – and that porta-jon – for trail users. All of us at TRTC thank you for your continued support. Please consider us in your holiday giving, by purchasing or renewing a membership and making a tax-deductible donation to TRTC.

You can donate online by going to and paying via PayPal, or you can send us a check payable to Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy Inc. (TRTC)
P.O Box 61091
Durham, NC 27715-1091

If you have any questions about joining or making a tax-deductible contribution to TRTC, or if you have any questions about your existing or past membership, please contact TRTC Treasurer at:
With thanks for your support,
Curt Devereux
Triangle Rails-to-Trails Conservancy

I-40 Bridge Probably Not Ready for Santa This Year But He Can Use ATT Along Massey-Chapel Road

A recent letter to the Durham News from Marvin Williams, the Director of the City's Public Works Department, has pushed completion of the I-40 bridge to January 2014. These delays have pushed back TRTC's planned effort to measure the entire ATT from the Durham Bulls Ball Park to the ATT's terminus south of U.S. 64. We originally planned for the project to be done in August 2013 but have had to re-schedule it to late October, then to December and now to at least late January. These measurements will allow for a unitary north to south mileage scheme and for the future installation of uniform mileage signs by all three counties. Currently the mileage markers run from south to north in Wake and Chatham and from north to south in Durham. With the new scheme the Durham Ballpark will be mile 0.0 and marks will be made at quarter mile intervals.
The trail segment along Massey-Chapel Road has progressed nicely over the last month with asphalt paving on October 31st and safety fencing installed over the past two weeks.


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