Elkins Awarded $30,000 for Trail Planning
Like an early Christmas present, City of Elkins was just notified of a Trail Accelerator grant award in the amount of $30,000 from the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA).
The city’s grant award is in support of the Elkins Area Shared Trail Plan. This project, a partnership between Elkins Area Shared Trails, West Virginia University’s Brad and Alys Smith Outdoor Economic Development Collaborative, and the Monongahela National Forest, will examine U.S. Forest Service properties in the western part of the Cheat-Potomac District.
The team will start with large landscape trail planning with the goal of locating a site for 8-10 miles of flagged trail. West Virginia is known for its challenging, natural trails (already a great asset), but this effort will introduce purpose-built, multi-use, and bike-optimized trails to the area, while providing more progressive entry to the sport for new riders, particularly the local NICA team and West Virginia’s only collegiate MTB team.
Additionally, new trails will improve public health, resident recruitment and retention and tourism spending for Elkins and other nearby communities.
The IMBA grant award, which requires a 100-percent local match, comes close on the heels of a $50,000 ARC Power Grant the city was awarded for trail planning in November.
IMBA’s Trail Accelerator grant fund is a competitive grant offering for communities with visions of transformational model trail systems that need extra support to realize that vision. Projects must show strong partnerships between local leaders, government entities, land managers, property owners, community groups and mountain bike or trail organizations such as IMBA Local partners. Grant recipients partner with IMBA Trail Solutions for professional trail planning and consultation—having a professional trail plan can help a community generate more interest and investment for trail projects.
Read more here.