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The James F. Hall Trail—a rail-with-trail—packs a lot into a short stretch: Its paved surface is great for bicycling, in-line skating, and strolling, and there are multiple playgrounds, picnic areas, and access points along the route. Best of all, this urban trail never crosses a road, so you can coast uninterrupted for its entire length from Phillips Park to Delaware Technology Park. The trail also offers alternative transportation benefits, connecting Newark neighborhoods with a regional transit station, the University of Delaware, and shopping centers.
Train aficionados are almost guaranteed to spot a train along the adjacent rail corridor, used by Amtrak, CSX, and the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA). But you won't get too close to the trains because a large fence separates the trail from the active line. Families with young children will especially enjoy this route, which passes three city parks (Phillips, Lewis, and Kells) that feature swings, slides, baseball diamonds, and soccer fields, plus basketball, handball, and tennis courts. The trail also crosses streams and wetlands and runs through a semi-forested area. Police call boxes are provided every 0.1 mile, and the trail is lit for use after dark.
The James F. Hall Trail is also a connector trail, and just east of S. Chapel Street, you can choose to head north on the 4.4-mile Pomeroy and Newark Rail Trail. That trail leads to White Clay Creek State Park, where it goes on to connect to the 2.3-mile Creek Road Trail.
To reach Bradford Lane at the southwestern end of the trail, from Interstate 95, take Exit 1 or 1B for State Route 896 (College Avenue), and travel north 2.1 miles. Turn left onto W. Park Place. After 0.4 mile, turn left onto Apple Road. After 0.3 mile, turn right onto Chrysler Avenue. Follow Chrysler Avenue for 0.1 mile to Bradford Lane (just after Devon Drive). Turn left onto Bradford Lane. The trail is at the end of the road (0.2 mile). There is no dedicated parking at this location.
To reach the College Avenue SEPTA Station, from I-95, take Exit 1 or 1B for SR 896 (College Avenue), and travel north 1.6 miles to head downtown. Take a left onto Moplar Street, and then take an immediate right to stay on Moplar. The SEPTA station and parking are to your right.
To reach Delaware Technology Park at the northern end of the trail, from I-95, take Exit 1 or 1B for SR 896 (College Avenue), and travel north 2.1 miles toward downtown. Turn right onto E. Park Place, and take it for 0.6 mile. Turn left onto S. Chapel Street. Turn right onto Wyoming Road, and take it for 0.6 mile. Park across from the College Square Shopping Center. The trail begins at the intersection of Wyoming Road and Library Avenue.
This trail is wonderful. It is nicely paved, with benches and trash cans along the way, as well as Police call boxes. There are multiple access points along the way.
The only drawback is the occasional loud train rolling by which may startle you the first time, but after that it is fine.
Every community should have a trail this wonderful! Hats off to the folks in DE who made this happen!
This trail seems too short when I am on a bike, but walking, skating, riding a Trikke- it is GREAT.
He passing trains will cause you to have to pause your conversation for a few seconds, but it isn't really an issue.
There are abundant benches if you need to take a rest. Multiple access points allow easy access to the trial.
I wish there were more like this wonderful trail.
The first completed segment of Newark, Delaware's emerging greenway network, the James F. Hall Trail closely parallels Amtrak's Northeast Corridor for most of its length near the city's southern end. Contrary to what people may think, the trail provides a very enjoyable experience. Trees and bamboo plants provide generous amounts of shade in many places, protecting users from the hot sun in spring and summer, and help muffle the frequent "whoosh" of Amtrak and SEPTA passenger liners on the adjacent railroad. The trail is also a good place to observe the various types of train traffic that pass by: Amtrak uses both the high-speed, futuristic Acela engines, as well as the older, boxy "toaster" engines on the line (the Acela trains are very difficult to photograph because of their high speed), and Norfolk Southern runs numerous freight trains out of its nearby rail yard. The trail also passes several parks and connects several neighborhoods, sparing both residents and students at the nearby University of Delaware from having to take a longer, circuitous route that crosses several busy streets. When connected with the Pomeroy Trail this fall, the trail will also provide an off-road link to the city's north end and White Clay Creek State Park.
I rode this trail this past week as I live just a few miles away and did not even know of this trail until this past week. It is a short nice ride and in the Fall when the new Pomeroy Trail opens it will connect to it. It passes the SEPTA Train station and there are signs for each street that you pass. It is lite for night uses and passes a city park, it dose have a canopy and is a great little trail for a young family. The City of Newark De is doing a great job of becoming a Bike friendly city.
This trail is a nice off the road bike trail with several bridges and lots of shade. We walk our dog here too...it's safe!
"This trail makes for a nice skate of about 3-4 miles. There are some wooden bridges, but they are still passable."
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