July 20, 2009
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Free Shuttles Serve Valley Forge National Historical Park
As traffic congestion, pollution, and driver frustration continue to grow on roads all around Valley Forge National HistoricalPark near Philadelphia, the park is trying out a new way to keep itself quiet, safe, and green. This summer, the Greater Valley Forge Transportation Management Association is managing a free shuttle that provides an alternative to driving among the most popular destinations in the park.
Visitors who use the Revolutionary Shuttle leave their cars in the parking lots and travel easily throughout the 3,600 acres of the park on colorful vehicles wrapped with images of Continental soldiers and fueled in part with biodiesel. The six-mile loop runs throughout most of the park, making stops at nine locations including the Welcome Center and Washington’s Headquarters. Bike racks on the shuttles allow visitors to combine a bike tour with an easy ride.
The park is operating the shuttle this summer on a pilot basis; staff members will receive comments from visitors to find out what they do and don’t like about the service.
“The Revolutionary Shuttle is a great new addition to the growing menu of visitor services at Valley Forge,” said park superintendent Mike Caldwell. “We’re experimenting with the service this summer and, if visitors are enthusiastic, we’ll expand it next year.”
Funding for the shuttle service comes from National Park Service Alternative Transportation Funds and a grant from the Ford Motor Company through the National Park Foundation.