James F. Hall Trail


7 Reviews

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James F. Hall Trail Facts

States: Delaware
Counties: New Castle
Length: 1.8 miles
Trail end points: Phillips Park at Bradford Ln & Devon Dr and Delaware Technology Park at Wyoming Rd & Library Ave
Trail surfaces: Asphalt
Trail category: Rail-Trail
ID: 6032625

James F. Hall Trail Description

The James F. Hall Trail, named for the City of Newark’s late parks and recreation director, packs a lot into a short stretch. Its paved surface is great for bicycling, inline skating, and stroller and wheelchair use, and there are multiple access points along the route. The trail runs through a semi-forested area and crosses streams, pristine wetlands, and two tributaries of White Clay Creek Wild & Scenic River—one at Phillips Park and one at Kells Park.

Best of all, this urban trail never crosses a road, so you can ride un-interrupted for its entire length. The trail also functions as a thoroughfare connecting Newark neighbor­hoods with a regional transit station, the University of Delaware, and shopping centers.

Starting at the southwestern terminus on Bradford Lane, you’ll cross wetlands on a boardwalk before heading into Phillips Park—the first of three city parks along the trail. Just 0.3 mile from the park, right after South College Avenue, is the old Newark Train Station, which houses the Newark History Museum. History and rail buffs will also enjoy the various railroad relics, including old switches, that are placed next to the trail.

Train enthusiasts are almost guaranteed a train sighting along the James F. Hall Trail, as the adjacent rail corridor (separated from the path by a large fence) is used by Amtrak, CSX Transportation, and the Southeastern Pennsyl­vania Transportation Authority (SEPTA). Riders arriving at the Newark Amtrak/SEPTA station off South College Avenue will find themselves only a short walk from the trail.

In another 0.2 mile, you’ll hit Lewis Park, and soon thereafter, Kells Park. Families with young children may especially enjoy the multiple playgrounds and picnic areas these parks have to offer. Along the path, trail users will find exercise equipment, baseball diamonds, and soccer fields, as well as basketball, handball, and tennis courts. Police call boxes are placed every 0.1 mile, and the trail is lit for 24-hour use.

Just east of South Chapel Street, 0.2 mile from Kells Park, the trail intersects the 4.4-mile Pomeroy and Newark Rail Trail. This connecting rail-trail leads to White Clay Creek State Park, where it goes on to connect to the 5.4-mile PennDel Trail for hikers. The James F. Hall Trail ends in 0.6 mile, just east of Library Avenue/DE 72, behind the University of Delaware’s Technology Park.

The James F. Hall Trail, a designated National Recreation Trail, is also part of the larger East Coast Greenway, a growing network of multiuse trails connecting 15 states and 450 cities and towns on a 3,000-mile route between Maine and Florida.

Parking and Trail Access

Parking is available at Phillips Park (101 B St), Lewis Park (727 Academy St), Kells Park (201 Kells Ave) and Delaware Technology Park (15 Innovation Way).

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.

James F. Hall Trail Reviews

Wide, Paved, and 1.76mi.

This trail was paved, wide, unfortunately only 1.76 miles long, and entirely off road. It, however, connects to Pomeroy and Newark Rail Trail which goes a little less than 2 miles. There is an active railroad paralleling the trail (we saw two trains go by while riding our bikes). There were parks, playgrounds, ball fields, a skate board rink, and adult exercise equipment along the path. The hills on the trail were both gentle and fun.

Fabulous Trail

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!

Great trail for walking, inline skating, etc.

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.

Impressive urban greenway

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.

James F. Hall

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!

Longer now

"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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