Rail Trail Policy
On April 19th, 2022, City Council voted unanimously to pass the Rail Trail Policy as drafted below:
1. The Sanford City Council will make the final determination on whether ATV use will continue on the Rail Trail or whether they will be prohibited, or their use limited in other ways, based on the outcome of the details below.
1. A. "All-terrain vehicle" or "ATV" means a motor- driven, off-road, recreational vehicle capable of cross-country travel on land, snow, ice, marsh, swampland or other natural terrain. "All-terrain vehicle" or "ATV" includes, but is not limited to, a multitrack, multiwheel or lowpressure tire vehicle; a motorcycle or related 2-wheel, 3-wheel or belt-driven vehicle; an amphibious machine; or other means of transportation deriving motive power from a source other than muscle or wind.
2. The Rail Trail is a multi-use trail that is an important and valuable asset to the City of Sanford. It is essential that ATV’s and all other users respect the trail and the environment. ATV’s should not unreasonably impact enjoyment of the trail by other user groups.
3. The Sanford Parks & Recreation Department will set the opening and closing dates for ATV and Snowmobile use on the Rail Trail.
4. When ATVs are allowed on the Rail Trail, the Sanford Police Department will conduct periodic enforcement activities for speed, vehicle registration, children’s helmets, noise, trespass off approved trails, etc. The Police Department will track complaints and violations that occur on trails.
5. One or more Sanford Trails Committee member positions will be available to representatives of the ATV community. Committee members must be Sanford/Springvale residents and must commit to attending the regular monthly Trails Committee meetings and engaging in other standard Trails Committee activities.
6. The City Communications Coordinator will disseminate information and feedback on the views of Rail Trail users regarding their feelings about sharing the trail with ATV users.
7. The posted speed limit of the Rail Trail will be 15 MPH and 5 MPH when approaching and riding through residential areas. ATV’s must slow down to 5 MPH or less and or pull over when approaching pedestrians along the trail.
8. The Rail Trail will be closed to ATVs from 10:00 PM until 8:00 AM.
9. The City will provide dust suppression to areas of the Rail Trail close to residential areas.
10. The City, through the Parks and Recreation Department and the Department of Public Works, or through private contractors, will provide ongoing, routine, annual, maintenance of the trail through grading, addition of materials, and compaction to maintain the trail in reasonable shape for all users, including walkers, joggers, and cyclists.
11. All motorized vehicles permitted on the Rail Trail must be legally registered as either an ATV, dirt bike, and/or snowmobile.
12. The Sanford Maine ATV Club will provide funding and or routine maintenance on the Rail Trail to mitigate the damage caused by wear and tear of ATVs. Any maintenance to be performed on the City trail must be approved by the Sanford Parks & Recreation Department.
13. This policy may be reviewed and amended as needed by the City Council to address any issues with Rail Trail usage that arise. The Sanford Parks & Recreation Department may from time to time request that ATV use be reevaluated by the City Council. This policy will be posted at trailheads and traditional gathering spots along the Rail Trail.
Mousam Way Land trust
The Sanford Springvale Mousam Way Land Trust is a nonprofit, community oriented organization dedicated to the permanent protection of local land for the benefit of the public and future generations as well as providing livable habitat for present and future generations of humans, plant and animal life in the Sanford, Maine area. Several Trust parcels have non-motorized trails, notably the Hall and McKeon Reserves. On the northerly side of the Rail Trail, there’s the 1/2 mile long Vigue Trail in Hall Environmental Reserve following the eastern shore of historic Deering Pond, with a trailhead off Deering Neighborhood Road. The Hazen's Trail follows the western shore for about 1/2 mile, connecting the Rail And Vigue Trails. About 2 1/2 miles from Deering Pond, there are 2 1/2 miles of rolling trails in the McKeon Environmental Reserve Click here to join the McKeon Reserve Facebook page Click Here for more information about the Mousam Way Land Trust