Design of the MassCentral Rail Trail Connection in Haydenville, MA

WMRGC Team: Beatrix Dalton, Kelsey Hammond, Serena Cattau, Jess McKnight

2018-2019: In collaboration with the Mill River Greenway Committee in the town of Williamsburg, MA, this student team designed a connection between the terminus of the MassCentral Rail Trail (MCRT) and the beginning of the South Main Street Connector in Haydenville, MA. The project scope included the descent of a steep slope and a pedestrian bridge across the Mill River, with the goal of providing safe access in compliance with state and federal regulations.

The team started by exploring the site, reviewing relevant previous work, and identifying key project requirements. During conceptual design, the team generated and selected design options for the location and grading of the path and bridge, as well as the bridge type and material. Through engineering calculations, the team analyzed the drainage plan and sized the retaining walls and bridge superstructure. Final deliverables included a final site plan in CAD, three-dimensional renderings in SketchUp, and two topographic models showing current and proposed conditions. The team presented their recommendations in a community forum at the conclusion of the project.