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Last updated on November 18th, 2014 · Print This Page Print This Page

American Tobacco Trail – North Carolina

Assaults on the American Tobacco Trail – Report As of June 10, 2014

Last week, there were three reported assaults on the American Tobacco Trail near Fayetteville and Pilot Streets in Durham.  All three involved teens assaulting and robbing a victim or attempting to assault them.  These all occurred during the day.  If you seen people lingering on the trail, especially groups of teenagers, be very cautious in approaching them, and report any suspicious activity at all to the police.


The American Tobacco Trail (ATT) is North Carolina’s premier and longest rail trail. It is a 23 mile long trail on the old Norfolk Southern rail bed starting in Durham, North Carolina and traversing southward through Durham, Chatham and Wake Counties and going through the towns of Cary and Apex, and Lake Jordan.

The ATT starts in downtown Durham near the Durham Bulls Athletic Park (DBAP). The starting point is on the southwest corner of Blackwell Street and Willard Street.  Parking is permitted at DBAP except on game days.   (At DBAP, the North-South Greenway goes northward; there is a safe 1-mile route from DBAP to the asphalt greenway).  From there the ATT travels 6.75 miles south to the stretch before I-40.   There is a bridge over I-40.

The trail section north of I-40 (6.75 miles) is all asphalt and is suitable for walking, running, cycling and skating.  In the section south of I-40 (13 miles) is asphalt and compact granite screenings, with 2 miles of dirt and gravel.  The two miles of dirt and gravel are south of Massey Road then connects to smooth surface


The ATT in the Durham area has been plagued with several cases of mugging, theft and public exposure. Not many cases but enough to raise some red flags.  Durham has beefed up security along this section and incidents have diminished. It is best, of course, to travel with multiple people. Barring that, it is better to travel in daylight on this section.  If you encounter anything or anyone suspicious, be sure to report it as the authorities want this to be welcoming trail for visitors.

South of I-40 few incidents have been reported.

Directions: To get to the American Tobacco Trail the best way is to approach Durham from either the east or west on I-40.   Get off at the exit marked either for the historic American Tobacco Campus.  If you are using a GPS, you could set it for the shopping mall at Southpoint: 6910 Fayetteville Road
Durham, North Carolina 27713.