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Posted: March 25, 2013 10:06 a.m.

Bike trail discussed for old rail route in N. Ga.

GAINESVILLE, Ga. (AP) — Officials in Georgia are talking about the possibility of creating a bike trail where the former Gainesville and Northwest Railroad connected Gainesville and Helen.

The planning director for the Georgia Mountains Regional Commission, Adam Hazell, told the Gainesville Times (http://bit.ly/11wE1Ad ) that turning parts of the 37-mile route into biking and pedestrian trials would support the area's tourism and outdoor recreation.

Officials point to Georgia's Silver Comet Trial as an example of a successful rails-to-trails project. It covers more than 61 miles in Cobb, Paulding and Polk counties.

The president of the Clermont Historical Society, Sandra Cantrell, says the big challenge for the Gainesville-to-Helen route is that some of it goes through private property.

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