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A year ago, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported this about the extensive Madison County (Ill.) Transit trail system, which now totals 85 miles:
(MCT Excutive Director Jerry) Kane said the county's original plan was to grab the abandoned railroad rights of way for future MetroLink (light-rail) expansion and to use them, in the meantime, as bike and pedestrian paths.
The district ended up getting enough easements so that future light rail lines can run alongside the bike paths.
"Initially, there were complaints from people who feared their privacy would be invaded," Kane said. "Today, the complaints are from people who want to know when they'll get their spur (link) to the trails."
That often seems to be the case where property owners have a change of heart regarding trails. I know developments in Colorado highlight proximity to bike paths, and several actually put the For Sale signs on the path side of the property.