Dozens of local and regional leaders, as well as a bevy of bicyclists and bike-ped advocates, turned out on June 27 for a dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Charles F. McGlashan Pathway, named for the former Marin County Supervisor who passionately advocated for nonmotorized transportation options.

The paved bike-pedestrian pathway, which has had sections opened to the public gradually since 2012, runs along the southern bank of Coyote Creek for about half a mile from its intersection with the Mill Valley-Sausalito Multiuse Path to the intersection of Tennessee Valley Road and Marin Avenue. The path is in District 3, the district represented by McGlashan from 2004 until his death in 2011.

The ceremony took place at the Log Cabin at 60 Tennessee Valley Road in Tam Valley, with former U.S. Rep Lynn Woolsey, Mill Valley Mayor Stephanie Moulton-Peters, Supervisor Kathrin Sears and Tamalpais Community Service District President Jeff Brown, among others, in attendance.

Initial funding for the pathway was secured by Woolsey and former Marin County Supervisor Annette Rose. Later, the pathway became a key part of the Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program (NTPP), a federal program begun in 2005 that launched Marin and three other U.S. communities in a nationwide program to reduce car trips by promoting safe bike and walking options. McGlashan once reassured a local resident that the pathway would be built so children could get out of Tam Valley to the Mill Valley-Sausalito Greenway and up to local schools. 

“It has been a long hard project to get this designed and cleared for permits … and we’re close,” he said at the time.

McGlashan saw the pathway not just as a practical and safe means to get around the community, away from cars and busy roads, but as a way to get people of all ages into nature to enjoy the beauty of Coyote Creek and the scenic views of forested hills. “For Charles, it was about bringing people together,” said Andy Peri of the Marin County Bicycle Coalition.

Before McGlashan died while on vacation in March 2011, he was renowned for boundless energy, passion and the promotion of projects aimed at reducing Marin’s greenhouse gas emissions. His achievements included the formation of Marin Clean Energy and supporting infrastructure for nonmotorized transportation choices. Naming the Tennessee Valley pathway after McGlashan was unanimously supported by the Marin County Parks and Open Space Commission and affirmed by the Marin County Board of Supervisors in 2013.

“Naming this pathway after Charles is a fitting tribute to his vision,” said Sears, McGlashan’s successor in District 3.

The dedication ceremony commemorated the 12-year collaboration among community members, agencies and individuals who helped create the beautiful community connector that the pathway is today.