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Trail Conference Projects Among 32 in New York to Get Funds for Trails
Above: Trail work with a view. Trail Conference volunteers take a break on the Bear Mountain Trails Project.
Two New York-New Jersey Trail Conference projects are among the 32 trail-related projects in New York State that will receive funding in 2009 as part of the federal Recreational Trails Program. New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation Commissioner Carol Ash announced the grant awards on June 23.
The Trail Conference was awarded $150,000 to complete rebuilding work on a section of the Appalachian Trail on Bear Mountain. This original section of the Appalachian Trail, the nation's first National Scenic Trail, at Bear Mountain is also the most heavily used and degraded. As part of a larger project to rebuild this historic trail to safely accommodate the hundreds of thousands of users annually, this project will open a three-quarter-mile section originating behind the Bear Mountain Inn.
A second grant, of $120,935, will support construction of a half-mile accessible trail along the Bear Mountain summit, giving access to an area that is not now available to persons with disabilities. The Trail Conference is a partner in this project with the Palisades Parks Conservancy, the grant recipient, and the Palisades Interstate Park Commission.
"These grants will help the Trail Conference and our partners achieve our goal of making hikes on Bear Mountain excellent trail experiences for visitors of all levels of experience," said Trail Conference Executive Director Ed Goodell.
"With its close proximity to New York City, Bear Mountain is a very popular destination for people who want to enjoy time in nature. These visitors deserve to have a great experience when they explore the trails there. Our trained volunteers, working alongside professional trail-builders, are creating the trails that make great hikes possible. The public will get a lot for its investment in this project."
State Parks administers the federal matching grant program providing funding to state and local governments, not-for-profit organizations, corporations, and partnerships for the maintenance, renovation, development, acquisition and construction of trails and trail-related facilities. Funding is provided through the Federal Highway Administration's Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU).
The New York-New Jersey Trail Conference builds, maintains, and protects 1700 miles of recreational trails for non-motorized use. The Trail Conference offers community service opportunities for people who love the outdoors.
Click here for the OPRHP press release and a list of all 32 project grants.