The newly opened Empire State Trail is the longest multi-use state trail in America, with 750 miles of trails and a project cost of $200 million. It hosts runners, hikers and bikers from New York City all the way to the Canadian border, and from Albany to Buffalo along the Erie Canal. C&G Partners designed a wayfinding master plan for trail gateways, signage, and interpretive displays distributed across an entire state.

Empire State Trail

The project gateways feature local stone, galvanized metal details inspired by highway infrastructure, and translucent roof planes for illumination of content below.

“During this unprecedented year, the Empire State Trail has been a lifeline for many, as local residents explored recreational opportunities in their backyards while remaining safe during a global health pandemic.”
​—Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul

Empire State Trail

Image Courtesy Starr Whitehouse Landscape Architects and Planners

Empire State Trail

The system includes an ensemble of sign types to address diverse trail conditions across 750 miles of pathways.

Empire State Trail Signage Design

Image Courtesy Starr Whitehouse Landscape Architects and Planners

In the trailhead gateways, custom cartography places the local district into the overall trail context while interpretation offers neighborhood stories and insights about cultural and retail venues. Attractions along the trail include 200+ New York State microbreweries. The Empire State Trail Brewery Passport, which is connected to the ThinkNYDrinkNY app, challenges trail users to explore them all.

Empire State Trail Signage Design

Empire State Trail Signage Design

Image Courtesy Empire State Development Corporation

The master plan was created in collaboration with NYS Parks, landscape architects Starr Whitehouse, and Alta Planning + Design.

Empire State Trail Signage Design

Image Courtesy Starr Whitehouse Landscape Architects and Planners

BREAKING NEWS: announced just this week, the first-ever Boilermaker Empire State Trail Challenge, a partnership with Utica's famous Boilermaker race, encourages you to walk, run, and bike the new trail this Spring.

Empire State Trail Masterplan