Pulaski County begins work on New River Trail extension project

PULASKI, Va. (WDBJ) -- Dan and Teresa Brissette don't consider themselves avid trailgoers.

"No, but we want to be," Teresa explained.

That's why they recently moved to Wythe County and spent their Tuesday nearby on Pulaski's section of the New River Trail.

Folks like the Brissettes are an example of why Pulaski County wants to extend the trail all the way to Randolph Park in Dublin.

"The New River Trail as it is is very important," said Pulaski County Administrator Jonathan Sweet. "When you make it part of a larger trail network and a larger distance, it becomes that much more valuable."

Sweet envisions the trail eventually spanning the whole county, connecting to the city of Radford at the New River. That would complete Pulaski County's portion of the larger Valley-to-Valley connection to Roanoke.

Sweet said extending the trails will also bring more millennials to the region.

"This is something that they're interested in and that's our future workforce," he said. "That's our future population, and we're building infrastructure to retain and attract them."

In the meantime, work has begun on the first of five extension phases. This phase will add another 1.5 miles to the existing trail, with expected completion in the fall.

Until that's finished, the Brissettes will keep on exploring their new home.

"Reading the reviews, it's like, 'Wow, we've gotta' do this,'" Teresa said.

"Yeah, more people will be coming out this way, I'm sure, because it's a great place to visit," her husband Dan added.