$730,000 coming for trail projects - The Star Ledger (12/7/06)

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$730,000 coming for trail projects
Funds part of $1.7M for improvements
Thursday, December 07, 2006
BY TOM HESTER
Star-Ledger Staff

Forty New Jersey trail projects will share $730,000 in aid from the federal Highway Administration's Recreational Trails program, the state announced yesterday.

The money is part of more than $1.7 million the Highway Administration is providing the state for trail improvements, state Environmental Protection Commissioner Lisa P. Jackson said.

"These funds will improve ac cess to ever-expanding networks of trails throughout New Jersey, including nature trails, trails in urban parks, handicapped-accessible trails and canoe trails," Jackson said. "The direct beneficiaries of this money are our many residents and visitors who enjoy the outdoors."

Eight trail projects received $25,000, the highest amount awarded: Sussex Branch Trail, Byram Township; Ten Mile Run pedestrian trail, Franklin, Somerset County; Elizabeth River Trail, Groundwork Elizabeth, Elizabeth; Swayze Mill Park Trail, Hope Township; Middlesex Greenway, Northwest Middlesex County; Liberty-Water Gap Trail, Morris County Rails-to-Trails Conser vancy; Nature trails, Sayreville; India Brook Bridge, Mendham Township, Morris County Environmental Commission, and the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference, Morris County for trail inventory.

In the coming year, the DEP will award the remaining $1 million for groups that operate and maintain trails, Jackson said. Recipients are required to raise money to meet 20 percent of the federal aid.

The DEP will reserve some of the federal aid for the development of motorized trail projects.

The 40 federal grants were recommended for funding by the New Jersey Trails Council and approved by the Federal Highway Administration. The Trails Council is made up of representatives from hiking, mountain biking, motorized trail use, canoeing, kayaking and horseback riding interest groups, as well as several general trail advocates and representatives from state government.

Government agencies and nonprofit organizations have until Dec. 15, to apply for the 2007 funding. Those interested may contact the DEP Trails Program at (609) 984-1339.

The trail improvement awards also include:
Trail projects:
Allamuchy Pond Loop Trail in Allamuchy State Park, Warren County, $8,000
Cedar Grove Community Trail, Cedar Grove, $16,908
Kayak Trail, Cheesequake State Park, Sayre ville, $8,924
Delaware and Raritan Princeton Nursery Trail system, Canal State Park, Middlesex County, $5,600
Interpretive signs, Essex County Department of Parks, $20,000

Interpretive signs:
High Point State Park, Sussex County, $8,000
Patriots' Path River Walk, Morris County Park Commission, $21,400
Musconetcong Watershed River Resource Center Association, Warren County, $12,045
Kayak ac cess maintenance, Round Valley Recreation Trail, Hunterdon County, $11,200

Trail improvements:
Protect Our Wetlands-Jonathon's Woods, Morris County, $15,000
Tanglewood Trail, Voor hees State Park, Hunterdon County, $1,000
Lenape Trail extension, West Orange, $6,859.
 
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