The CTA is excited and thankful to have received a Recreation Trails Program grant from the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation.
It has been over two years since Tropical Storm Irene left its mark on Vermont, but we are still working to restore certain sections of the Catamount Trail. Irene destroyed numerous culverts and bridges on the CT, creating challenging crossings for trail users. While many culverts and bridges have been replaced, others, due to their remote locations and the cost of repairs, have not. With this grant, the CTA will partner with the GMNF and a local contractor to reuse a 36-foot bridge that was removed from its original location and stored for a future use. The intact and functional “Frost Bridge” will be moved to Section 17 of the CT in Lincoln, replacing a culvert that was destroyed by Irene. The grant will allow the CTA to transport the bridge approximately 9 miles by truck, then another 0.50 miles on the CT with excavating equipment. It will also allow us to install abutments, secure the bridge to the abutments, install new rails on the bridge, and restore the trail tread adjacent to the project area once the bridge is in place. We are excited to make this beautiful section of trail accessible to the public once again.
Press Release – Recreation Trail Program Announced
MONTPELIER–Governor Peter Shumlin today announced the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation will be awarding $504,279 in grants to 15 municipalities and non-profit organizations across Vermont for recreational trail projects. Grants are provided through the Recreational Trails Program, and more money is on the way.
Recreational Trails Program funds come from the Federal Highway Administration, helping to improve livability for Vermonters. Funds may be used for the development, rehabilitation and maintenance of trails and trailhead facilities for non-motorized, motorized, and/or multiple compatible recreational trail uses.
“Vermont’s outdoor recreation opportunities are so important to our way of life and our economy. These grants provide opportunities for Vermonters to spend more time on our trails, encouraging outdoor activity and healthy living,” said Governor Shumlin.
“By improving access to public lands and waters, these grants also support both local tourism and recreation businesses,” said Forests, Parks and Recreation Commissioner Michael Snyder.
About half of the grant funds are awarded to VAST (Vermont Association of Snow Travelers) for grooming, signage and safety patrol of the statewide system of snowmobile trails, with the other half divided between fourteen other project sponsors in increments of $20,000 or less. Sponsors are required to contribute at least 20% of the total project costs. Applications are reviewed and ranked by a five-member citizens’ committee based on rigorous criteria, and only the highest priority projects get funded.
Fortunately, funding for this important program is made available to Vermont on an annual basis and the next grant funding cycle is ready to begin. Municipalities and non-profit organizations can now apply for Recreational Trails Program grant funds for fall 2014 and spring 2015 construction seasons. Applications are available online through the Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation’s website at http://www.vtfpr.org . The deadline for grant applications to be submitted to the Department is February 28, 2014.
An electronic version of this release is available here http://www.anr.state.vt.us/