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York County Economic Alliance

  • Developed Regional Trail Towns and Trail Friendly business programs

  • Created and facilitated a 7-town Trail Towns program

  • Developed a toolkit and webinars for Trail Friendly business program

  • Created and facilitated a process that empowered and directed stakeholders

  • Collaborated with county economic development agency, county parks department, regional trail authority, local governments, residents and business owners to create buy-in

  • Created robust community engagement

  • Developed individual action plans for each community


York County is a vibrant region with urban and rural outdoor assets, including trails, rivers, local parks and state parks! York County Economic Alliance (YCEA) recognized these assets as an opportunity for economic development and understood that these assets could be a way to improve business opportunities, local economies and quality of life for  residents. YCEA asked Eastwick Solutions to develop a strategic plan for a regional Trail Town  program to implement in seven towns: York , Glen Rock, Seven Valleys, Railroad, New Freedom, Wrightsville and Hanover; and also, a trail friendly business program for businesses along or near multi-use and river trails, and parks.


The result was York County Trail Towns and the York County Trail Friendly Business Program. Trail Towns is a step-by-step collaborative process to help towns revitalize by leveraging nearby trails, rivers and parks and become a user-friendly destination for outdoor recreationists. Trail improvements, visitor amenities and information, and marketing were all early action recommendations made. Robust community engagement included creation of local action teams to guide the effort, half-day walking workshops (we call them “walkshops”), community surveys, key stakeholder interviews, and presentations to elected officials. For each town a set of early action items was developed with high-priority recommendations and next steps.

The Trail Friendly Business Program included developing a handbook for businesses with best practices for attracting cyclists, hikers and kayakers, and webinars to introduce businesses to the potential of the outdoor economy and what they can do to benefit from it.

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