By press release • 11/29/2021 09:31 EST

On November 18, North Branford Land Conservation Trust (NBLCT) www.nblandtrust.org announced the development of a system of public hiking trails in North Branford, made possible through a collaboration with Honeywell, the Northford Ice Pavilion www.northfordice .com, the Pines of North Branford and Belfonti companies www.belfonti.com.

Honeywell has contributed $ 15,000 to help fund the project and will provide parking spaces on its site for residents of North Branford who wish to hike the trails. Honeywell employees will also volunteer their time, working alongside volunteers from the North Branford Land Conservation Trust, creating trails and building boardwalks and wooden walkways as needed.

“We are proud to give back to our North Branford community,” said Steven Seehusen, North Branford Plant Manager, Honeywell. “These new opportunities for passive recreation are helping to improve our community’s walkability and the preservation of green spaces, making North Branford an even more vibrant region.”

The new trail system will be created on a 27-acre parcel of land owned by NBLCT. The site is predominantly forested and includes a diversity of trees, shrubs, flowering plants and native wildlife. The proposed trail is on flat ground, with a small stream and several wooded wetlands adding to the diversity.

According to David Sargent, President of the NBLCT, “The proposed trail system is still in the design phase, but will contain at least one loop trail, taking advantage of the interesting features of the plot, and two short entrance spurs. The first spur would be a starting point with a kiosk on the east side of the Northford Ice Pavilion and the second will be at the existing Village Street entrance. “

“Our plan is to build wooden trails on site to protect sensitive wet soils and to allow users to walk through the wetland and see ‘inside’ a wooded wetland,” said Bonnie Symansky, director of the NBLCT.

The NBLCT land adjoins two other plots of land owned by related entities of Belfonti Companies, one of which is home to the Northford Ice Pavilion and the other is home to The Pines, a 120-unit luxury apartment community that currently crosses the approval process. Belfonti Companies will contribute to the project by donating the cost of creating a trail from Fire Lite Drive to the trail entrance kiosk on the grounds of the Northford Ice Pavilion. Belfonti will also grant an easement of its land, at no cost to NBLCT, which will allow the creation of the proposed entry point at the trailhead and extend the trail network from the NBLCT-owned land to the parking area at Honeywell, thereby allowing public access to the trail network. According to Michael Belfonti, CEO of Belfonti Companies, the Northford Ice Pavilion is also willing to provide parking near the trailhead entry point for those looking to hike the trails.

Mr. Belfonti said: “The trail project as envisioned could not have gone ahead without Honeywell’s generous contribution and the positive synergy between all participating organizations. Through our combined efforts, we are all helping to create a vibrant mixed-use area in North Branford with multiple components, including housing, employment, and active and passive recreation, all within walking distance. “

“Parents and guests of our hockey players and skaters will be delighted to know that they will now have additional walking trails right next to our facilities,” said Marty Roos, one of the owners of the Northford Ice Pavilion.

“This project creates a great connection for users who will have the opportunity to live, work and play in a central area,” said Michael Paulhus, Managing Director of North Branford.

Roger Salway, Economic Development Coordinator for the City of North Branford, said: “The project is also in line with the City’s Conservation and Development Plan, and the new trails will provide residents of neighboring neighborhoods and others with the possibility of accessing the trail system. “