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01/10/2020

Local Scouts choosing Greenbelt trails for ultimate projects

Bottle Shed at the Recycling Center
Eagle Scout Project Locations (click for larger map)

For the last several years, local Boy Scouts have chosen to make improvements to the town's Greenbelt as projects for Eagle Scout awards.

"This year has been significant in the number of projects completed and in the pipeline," Town Planner Maureen O'Meara said in a memo to the Conservation Committee.

The two projects completed in 2019 enhanced the newly installed bridge at Pollock Brook.

The Pollock Brook East project, completed by Chris Choi, included rehabilitation and installation of a loop trail on the south side of the bridge connecting to the Riverside Cemetery, and removal of vegetative debris on burial grounds located on both sides of the brook.

A separate Pollock Brook West project, completed by Tim Gilda, finished the trail extension envisioned with the installation of the pedestrian Pollack Brook bridge. Scout Tim Gilda cleared a trail connection from the western edge of Riverside Cemetery to the Spurwink River terminus across from the Scarborough overlook.

Pollock Bridge East Project
Pollock Bridge West Project

Two more projects have been approved for 2020.

At their October 2019 meeting the committee reviewed plans submitted by scout Nick Leschey to rehabilitate and establish a trail connecting town open space in the Cottage Brook neighborhood with existing space near McAuley Road. was built. The McAuley Connector Trail project includes construction of five benches to be installed at the connector, Pollack Brook south overlook, Pollack Brook west overlook, and Gull Crest.

Also approved for 2020 is the Town Farm Invasives Removal project for an area of the Town Farm on Spurwink Avenue. South Portland resident Jake Goodwin will be removing invasive plants, following recommendations and coordinating expert advice from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The Eagle Scout project tradition started in 2002 with Chris Thompson's "Boy Scout Bridge," a 35-foot-long structure on the Inner Loop trail in Gull Crest. "This bridge remains the gold standard on town trails," said O'Meara, adding that Thompson, a high-school junior when he completed the project, is now the town's seasonal trail maintenance person.

Projects that followed over the years:

2017 Cross Hill boardwalk extension - Noah Olsen
The project extended 55 feet of boardwalk on muddy sections of existing trails on the Cross Hill open space near Tiger Lily Lane.

2015 Gull Crest Outer Loop extension/expansion - Peter DiNinno
This project extended and widened an existing boardwalk network on the Gull Crest Outer Loop trail.

2014 Greenbelt network latitude/longitude mapping - Nick Bozek
This project created and installed maps at trail intersections that include the intersection's latitude and longitude.

2013 Two Lights boardwalk - Tim DiNinno
Boardwalk was extended along a well-used trail that connects Broad Cove to Two Lights Road.

2007 Winnick Woods bridge - Randall Hobbs
Spanning a stream in Winnick Woods, a bridge was constructed on the main trail that can support public mowing equipment.

2006 Great Pond little bridge - Nick Quatrano
The bridge was constructed on the main trail connecting the Jewett Road neighborhood to Great Pond.