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Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Tulip Trestle will soon be user-friendly tourist destination

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Planned improvements to areas around the Tulip Trestle this spring will beautify the historic site and make it more accessible and user-friendly to tourists.

The Tulip Trestle.
(GCDW File Photo courtesy of Indiana Rail Road Company)
Plummer/Richland Creek Watershed Coordinator Adam Grossman unveiled plans for the site to the Greene County Commissioners at its regular meeting on Tuesday morning.

Grossman explained that officials with the Greene County Soil and Water Conservation, United States Department of Agriculture, the Natural Resources Conservation Service, Crop Production Services and Indiana Rail Road Company have teamed up with landowner Jackie Craig to make the beautification project a reality.

Grossman said the 6.7 acre site, owned by Craig and placed in a reserve program, will be transformed to a flower-filled educational and scenic tool for the county.

He noted that prairie grass and a mixture of wildflowers will be planted on the landowner's property and under the trestle on railroad property right of way, a nature walking trail will be constructed and an observatory deck along with benches will be placed at the site.

In addition, another pull-off will be built to provide tourist with a better view of the structure for photos.

"About September, it's going to look really great out there," Grossman told the commissioners. "There are going to be a lot of wildflowers in bloom."

There are plans to set up a audio tour along the trail explaining this history of the construction of the engineering marvel that was completed in 1906, according to Gross.

The structure ---- the third of the longest steel viaduct's in the world ---- is 2,295 feet long and 157 feet high over the Richland Creek and valley floor below.

"Things are really rolling along with this project," Grossman commented. "Most everything for the project has been donated."

He added, "This started as a smaller project and kind of snowballed since then. We first talked about the idea almost of year ago about trying to do something down there (at the trestle). It's a picturesque site. Everybody comes there to take pictures ... Everybody in the area knows where it's at. Everybody visits it and it makes sense that it would be a great place to turn it into an educational tool and also a tourist tool. We've kind of taken that idea and kind of molded it."

Grossman said the landowner is keen to the educational aspect and the environmental advantage that the project can provide.

"He really thought this was a great idea. Originally, we wanted to have a wetlands out there. After doing extensive soils survey, a wetlands wasn't going to happen because the soils weren't conducive to it. So this we still wanted to use this project to our advantage and the property owner still wanted to use it," he explained.

A view looking west from the back of an Indiana Rail Road car going over the trestle.
(GCDW file photo by Nick Schneider)
Grossman said there has also been talk of setting up a historic tour of sorts that will feature the Richland Creek Covered Bridge, near Bloomfield, the Tulip Trestle and ending at Yoho's General Store in Solsberry.

Indiana Rail Road Company, which will erect a barrier to ensure that patrons to the area do not trespass onto the actual trestle structure, has asked the county commissioner's attorney Marilyn Hartman to prepare legal documents to release liability in the event someone is injury at the site, according to Grossman.

The commissioners granted that request and also agreed to allow county highway trucks to be used to haul donated gravel from the landowner for the new pull off site.

Commissioner President Rick Graves liked he idea and commented, "We'll help you. Whatever you need, you just ask."

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great news

-- Posted by a-porter on Tue, Jan 15, 2013, at 3:33 PM

This is great news for Greene County. The tresle has always been a "must see" for residents and visitors to our area. Now, instead of feeling like we really shouldn't be there, it will be an "official" attraction and something we truly can brag about and show off. So happy we had civic minded folks involved to make this happen!

-- Posted by old linton native on Tue, Jan 15, 2013, at 3:33 PM

Would be great to have picnic tables for family gatherings later on.

-- Posted by notnclique on Tue, Jan 15, 2013, at 4:07 PM

This would be great! I can't wait! We love this place.

-- Posted by mint5jf on Tue, Jan 15, 2013, at 5:03 PM

Walked it 1971,

-- Posted by Equipmentguy on Tue, Jan 15, 2013, at 7:37 PM

What a wonderful idea, and way to keep our younger generations informed of this historic site. It has been "Home" to alot of us all of our lives. We have loved it and it's great that we will be able to share it's beauty and grace with others. Great story.

-- Posted by GreeneCountyMomma on Tue, Jan 15, 2013, at 9:07 PM

This is wonderful news. Jack Craig and the entire Craig family are doing great things for the people of Greene County with this project and with the Craig Family Camp near Owensburg. Kudos to everyone involved!

-- Posted by gocolts on Tue, Jan 15, 2013, at 9:35 PM

Thank you for the good comments! I am open to new ideas, and ways to make the site better for users and better for education. Please feel free to add anything, or ask questions about other projects and our planning in the Plummer/Richland Creek watershed. My e-mail is agrossman@ymail.com

-- Posted by agrossman on Wed, Jan 16, 2013, at 10:28 PM

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