Wex, the South Portland-based provider of corporate payment solutions, has donated $25,000 to the Eastern Trail Alliance’s effort to complete a 1.6-mile section of the off-road recreational trail as it passes through Scarborough.
The alliance has raised $3.2 million of $3.8 million needed to build two bridges in Scarborough – one over the Nonesuch River near Eastern Road and the other over railroad tracks near Pleasant Hill Road, according to a news release. Once the bridges are completed, trail users will have access to 16 contiguous, off-road miles from downtown Saco to Bug Light Park in South Portland.
“Many of our employees live and work in close proximity to the Eastern Trail and these expansion efforts align with our philanthropic mission to support wellness within our communities,” said Hilary Rapkin, Wex senior vice president and general counsel.
Since the “Close the Gap” campaign started in 2012, the alliance has received funding from Maine Department of Transportation, $1.55 million; Portland Area Comprehensive Transportation System, $1.1 million; Scarborough and South Portland, $286,000; Town and Country Federal Credit Union, $100,000; Avangrid, $25,000; and the Thompson Family of South Portland, $25,000, among other donations.
“This is one of the largest projects the trail has ever taken on and we wouldn’t be this successful without the strong support from Wex and our other funding partners,” said Carole Brush, alliance executive director.
The Eastern Trail is a 65-mile on- and off-road recreational trail that runs from South Portland to Kittery. It’s part of a larger effort to establish a 3,000-mile East Coast Greenway from Calais to Key West, Florida.