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North Central Rail Trail to Be Named After Former DNR Secretary Torrey Brown
ANNAPOLIS — On Wednesday, January 3 2007, the Board of Public Works approved the renaming of North Central Rail Trail at Gunpowder Falls State Park in Baltimore County the Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail. The board also approved the dedication of the Monkton Trail Station along the trail in honor of Brown who was secretary of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, under Governors Harry R. Hughes and William Donald Schaefer.
"I am absolutely delighted and humbled by this honor,” said former DNR Secretary Torrey Brown. “This trail was one of my favorite projects. This really is a wonderful occasion for me.”
At today’s meeting, Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. cited Dr. Brown’s leadership in developing the North Central Rail Trail and the Monkton Train Station, as well as his exemplary service to the State of Maryland on behalf of Maryland’s natural resources.
Dr. Brown was Maryland’s third Natural Resources Secretary and served in that position from 1983 to early 1995. His appointment as Secretary was proceeded by a long and distinguished career in the Maryland General Assembly, including Chair of the Environmental Matters Committee.
Brown was the major driving force in developing the abandoned Northern Central Railroad as the state’s first multi-use recreational trail. Overcoming considerable opposition to the recreational trail concept and development, the new North Central Rail Trail was dedicated in 1984 and thus began an incredible success story. By the end of the decade, the Trail had blossomed under Brown’s leadership into a national model of what could be done with such abandoned railroad property, and other states used this vision as a model.
The 20-mile Trail is now wildly popular with the citizens of Maryland, and at its northern terminus connects with Pennsylvania’s rail trail extending into York County.
The abandoned Monkton Train Station was located at the 7-mile point of the trail. The Department converted the building to public use by providing funds, preparing detailed design plans, and constructing the renovation of the building. In 1989, the Monkton Trail Station was dedicated and opened for public use.
January 3, 2007
The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is the state agency responsible for providing natural and living resource-related services to citizens and visitors. DNR manages more than 449,000 acres of public lands and 17,000 miles of waterways, along with Maryland's forests, fisheries and wildlife for maximum environmental, economic and quality of life benefits. A national leader in land conservation, DNR-managed parks and natural, historic and cultural resources attract 11 million visitors annually. DNR is the lead agency in Maryland's effort to restore the Chesapeake Bay, the state's number one environmental priority. Learn more at www.dnr.maryland.gov