News Flash

City News

Posted on: January 3, 2020

Portland Trails & City of Portland Create Accessible Trail in Canco Woods for Nearby Seniors

Canco Woods Picture

In the fall of 2019, Portland Trails made significant upgrades to a trail in Canco Woods to create the first wheelchair-accessible forested trail in Portland. With support from the City and generous funding from an AARP Community Challenge grant, Portland Trails’ trail crew and volunteers upgraded the existing loop trail by widening, smoothing, and hardening the trail surface, installing two park benches, and improving signage. These upgrades are intended to directly benefit the neighbors of Canco Woods, particularly the residents of two senior living facilities adjacent to the trail, Birchwoods and Woods at Canco.

For several years, Jaime Parker, the Trails Manager for Portland Trails, has led residents on walks through Canco Woods. Residents began sharing their ideas about how to make the trail more accessible for people with limited mobility, such as smoother terrain, wider footbridges, and more seating, and Parker got to work developing a plan to make it a reality. Just before trail work began, Parker presented his plan to residents from both living facilities and asked for their feedback, sparking a continued conversation about accessibility. This type of collaboration with community members is fundamental to Portland Trails’ democratic trail-building process.

“After meeting with folks living at the senior housing, we knew that there were people who would directly benefit from the work we were doing,” says Parker. “We want folks who live right next door to be able to enjoy it with whatever level of mobility they may have.”

This loop trail is Portland’s first wheelchair-accessible trail through a forested area, an achievement that fits with the City of Portland’s and Portland Trails’ missions to make Portland a more inclusive place for all residents. This improved trail will also better serve people with strollers, walkers, canes, and other mobility needs.

“We are so glad to see these accessibility improvements to the trails at Canco Woods,” said Portland’s Deputy Director of Parks, Recreation and Facilities, Ethan Hipple. “Thanks to the hard work of Portland Trails and support from AARP, people of all ages and abilities can now enjoy this hidden gem of open space in Portland. Canco Woods is home to a small pond, wetlands, pine groves, over 120 species of birds, and a loop trail network that lets you see it all. And thanks to this project, more people of all abilities will be able to enjoy it.”

Canco Woods is a City of Portland Land Bank property. Portland Trails has a conservation easement on the land. Portland’s other wheelchair-accessible trails include the Eastern Promenade, Back Cove, and Bayside Trails. These are some of the city’s most-used trails.

About Portland Trails

Portland Trails transforms Greater Portland into a healthier community for people-powered transportation, conservation and recreation by creating and maintaining a network of trails and green spaces. Learn more at and join Portland Trails on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Bailey O’Brien
Communications & Outreach Coordinator
Portland Trails
305 Commercial Street
Portland, Maine 04101

Additional Info...
Facebook Twitter Email

Other News in City News

Friday news round up twitter

City News Round Up for Friday, November 20

Posted on: November 20, 2020
tree delivery

Tree Delivered to Monument Square

Posted on: November 17, 2020
Friday news round up twitter

City News Round Up for Friday, November 13

Posted on: November 13, 2020
One Climate Change

Council Approves One Climate Future Plan

Posted on: November 13, 2020
ReCode Portland

Council Approves Phase 1 of ReCode

Posted on: November 13, 2020

Tuesday, November 3 is Election Day

Posted on: October 30, 2020
National Drug Take Back Day

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

Posted on: October 22, 2020
Friday news round up twitter

City News Round Up for Friday, September 25

Posted on: September 25, 2020
Friday news round up twitter

City News Round Up for Friday, September 18

Posted on: September 18, 2020
Friday news round up twitter

City News Round Up for Friday, September 11

Posted on: September 11, 2020
911 Memorial 1

City to Host 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony

Posted on: September 8, 2020
Friday news round up twitter

City News Round Up for Friday, September 4

Posted on: September 4, 2020
portland news

Portland Farmer's Outdoor Market

Posted on: June 17, 2020
portland news

City Hosts Blood Drive on June 30

Posted on: June 9, 2020
portland news

2019 Maine Hire-A-Vet Campaign

Posted on: February 21, 2020

Absentee Voting Begins in Portland

Posted on: February 6, 2020
Volunteers Needed Picture

Portland Neighborhood Volunteers Needed

Posted on: January 15, 2020

Portland Names New Police Chief

Posted on: July 25, 2019