The Transylvania Times -

Ecusta Trail Preserves The Corridor

 

August 26, 2019



The proposed purchase of the railroad corridor is nothing close to a “land grab.” In fact, the railroad company that owns the transportation corridor has a right to sell it to another entity. This transaction, in lieu of abandonment, preserves the corridor in perpetuity for Henderson and Transylvania counties. Over the years, one thing that it seems all Henderson and Transylvania County folks can agree on is preserving the corridor for future rail use, and that is exactly what this transaction does.

To learn more about the Ronald Reagan era federal railbanking statute, the Friends of the Ecusta Trail website is a good place to start. Incidentally, the original railroad purchase documents dating back to the late 1800s show that 98 percent of the original parcels that make up the corridor, were obtained through a deed, not through right of way.

Secondly, if you own property adjacent to the corridor and believe that you have been paying taxes on the corridor, you need to talk to the county tax department as you are not responsible for the property taxes on the corridor. The railroad pays those taxes.

Keep in mind that the current transaction is only to purchase the corridor. Neither Friends of the Ecusta Trail nor Conserving Carolina have plans to be trail-building entities. Although both groups are hopeful that the trail is eventually constructed, any plans to construct a trail on the corridor will need to go through the planning processes of the county or municipality through which the corridor passes.

As with any change, there are always questions and uncertainty. The best way to deal with these questions is to understand facts, not immediately jump to conclusions based on misinformation and myths.

If you are an adjacent landowner and have questions or concerns about this transaction or the corridor, I invite you to email the question to info@ecustatrail.org and a member of our board will be happy to speak with you or point you to many resources for further information.

John Ditillo

Brevard

 
 

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