Commission Agenda Item No. 2
Presenter: Andy Goldbloom

Recreation Trails Grant Funding
May 23, 2013

I.       Executive Summary:  This item is to award federal funds allocated under the National Recreational Trail Grants for trail construction, renovation and acquisition projects.  This item obligates federal National Recreational Trail Funds to eligible trail projects based upon the recommendations of the Texas Statewide Trails Advisory Committee.

II.     Discussion:  The National Recreational Trails Fund (NRTF) comes from a portion of the federal gas tax generated by gasoline purchases to utilize off-road recreational vehicles, such as off-road motorcycles and four-wheelers.  The purpose of the NRTF is to provide funding for projects that create new and maintain existing motorized and non-motorized recreational trails.  These federal funds are administered by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and distributed to states via a formula that takes into account state population and sales of fuel for off-road recreational vehicles.  Nationwide, the program was appropriated $85 million for the current federal fiscal year (FY2013), Texas’ share of these funds is $3,954,874.  Last year, the FHWA reviewed their funding distribution formula and discovered an error that underfunded the Texas apportionment from 2009 through 2011.  This error has been corrected with additional funding authorized for Texas.  A number of projects funded in previous years were completed under budget and two projects were cancelled, creating another $500,000 available for re-allocation this year.  The Department has been utilizing the re-allocated funding to fund trail improvements in state parks.  The result is a total of $6,276,354 of federal funding available to fund eligible trail construction projects.

The program has an annual deadline of February 1 for local sponsors to submit trail funding proposals.  Seventy-two projects were submitted for funding consideration requesting over $11.5 million in funds.  Projects were evaluated and scored by the Texas Trails Advisory Board.  Recommendations are to fund 33 of the projects totaling $5,776,354 of federal funding assistance.

The Act that created this fund stipulates that states must have a trails advisory board made up of various trail user group representatives to be eligible to receive the federal funds.  The purpose of the trails advisory board is to provide guidance in the distribution of these funds.  The nine member, Texas Statewide Trails Advisory Committee met in March 2013 to review the submitted trail project proposals and develop a list of recommended projects for funding.  Each project was reviewed by the advisory committee and scored based on the quality of the project, its cost effectiveness, its impact on recreational trail opportunities, and geographic distribution of funds.  Exhibit A contains the list of submitted projects, with funds requested, project scoring and funding recommendations made by the advisory committee and a description of each project.

A federal requirement of the NRTF is that 30 percent of the funds be spent on motorized recreational trail projects, 30 percent on non-motorized trail projects, with the remaining 40 percent discretionary.  Because few public park entities in Texas provide opportunities for motorized trail riding, it is typically difficult to generate enough motorized trail proposals to meet the 30 percent motorized trail mandate.  As such, the grant funding limit for motorized proposals is $500,000 per project versus $200,000 for non-motorized proposals.  Funding recommendations in Exhibit A include 5 motorized trail projects that satisfy the 30 percent motorized trail requirement.

III.    Recommendation:  The staff recommends the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission adopt the following motion:

"Funding for 33 projects recommended in Exhibit A in the amount of $5,776,354 and state park trail improvements in the amount of $500,000 is approved."

Attachments – 1

  1. Exhibit A – Project Listing and Funding Recommendations

Commission Agenda Item No. 2
Exhibit A

Ranking of 2013 Recreational Trail Grant Proposals

  Sponsor Project Name County Funds Requested Funds Recommended Project Description
48 Fort Worth Mountain Bikers Assoc. Marion Sansom Park Mtn. Bike Tr. Imp. Tarrant $27,502 $27,502 Renovate 0.25 mile trail, benches, culverts
46 Sam Houston Trails Coalition, Inc. Richards-Raven Trail Network, Phase II Montgomery $200,000 $200,000 New 10 mile equestrian trail, bridges, trailhead, signing, NEPA
44 City of San Marcos Purgatory Creek Natural Area Trails Hays $92,375 $92,375 New 1.4 mile granite trail, parking
43 City of Childress ATV & Moto Park Improvements Childress $165,280 $165,280 New 10 mile trail, staging area, unloading ramp, tools, erosion control
43 City of Grapevine Wall-Farrar Trail Tarrant $200,000 $200,000 New 1.6 mile granite and dirt trail, bridges, signs, shelter, entry icons
43 Greater Houston Off-Road Biking Assoc. Huntsville Trail Expansion Walker $100,000 $100,000 Bridge to access new trail area
43 National Audubon Society Trinity River Audubon Center Trail Dallas $74,880 $74,880 New 1 mile dirt trail, signs, boardwalk
42 City of Taylor Taylor Cross Town Recreation Trail Williamson $158,250 $158,250 New 0.5 renovate 0.4 mile concrete trail, benches, signs
42 City of Tulia Mackenzie Park Trail Improvements Swisher $66,771 $66,771 Renovate 0.5 mile trail, culverts
41 City of New Braunfels Fisher Park Trails Comal $200,000 $200,000 New 2.5 mile concrete trail, signs, shade structure, boardwalk
41 Westcave Preserve Corp. Westcave Preserve Trails Travis $70,192 $70,192 New 0.25, renovate 0.5 mile of trail, ATV & trailer, signs, tools
40 City of Kilgore Kilgore Recreational Trail Gregg $195,787 $195,787 New 1.25 mile concrete trail, bridge, benches, signs, trash cans
40 City of McAllen McAllen Motocross Park Hidalgo $238,424 $218,400 New 2.5 mile motorized riding area, restroom, fencing, signing
40 City of Pearland Phase II Connectivity Trail Brazoria $200,000 $200,000 New 2.75 mile concrete trail
40 City of Pflugerville Gilleland Creek Trail Travis $172,500 $172,500 New 0.55 mile concrete trail, signs, benches, trash cans
40 San Antonio River Authority Helton - San Antonio River Park Trail Bexar $150,000 $150,000 New 1.2 mile granite/concrete trail
40 City of Seabrook Seabrook to Armand Bayou Trail Harris $156,800 $156,800 New 1.3 mile granite trail, bridge, benches, signs, trash cans
40 City of Universal City Cibolo Creek Recreation and Nature Tr. Bexar $117,600 $117,600 New 0.6 mile granite trail, renovate 2.7 mile trail, signing
39 Friends of Trinity River Refuge From Crosswalks to Boardwalks Liberty $45,000 $45,000 New 500' boardwalk
39 Schertz Seguin Local Gov. Corp. SSLGC Motorized Trail Guadalupe $400,000 $400,000 New 35 mile motorized trail, restroom, staging area, signs, entry booth
37 City of Emory Emory Recreational Trail Rains $143,710 $143,710 New 0.5 mile asphalt trail, parking area, bridge
37 City of Leander North Branch Brushy Creek Trail Williamson $56,000 $56,000 New 0.4 mile granite trail, bridge
37 City of Lindale Lindale Community Park Smith $199,980 $145,860 New 0.65 mile concrete trail, restroom, fitness stations, bridge
37 Sam Houston National Forest Multi-use Trail Rehabilitation Walker $476,000 $476,000 Renovate 10 miles dirt trail, bridges, trailer, training
37 City of Stephenville City Park North Trail Link Erath $141,600 $141,600 New 0.4 mile concrete trail, benches, trash cans, parking
37 White River Municipal Water Dist. White River Multi-Use Trail System Crosby $540,496 $500,000 New 15 miles motorized trail, renovate 10 miles, restroom, fencing, equipment
35 Bowie County Northeast Texas Trail Bowie $158,400 $158,400 Convert 2.1 mile abandoned rail corridor into trail
35 City of Canton Mill Creek Lake Park Trail Improvements Van Zandt $179,440 $179,440 New 4.48 mile granite and dirt trail, signing
35 Fort Bend County MUD #146 Oyster Creek Hike and Bike Trail Fort Bend $164,394 $164,394 New 1.4 mile concrete trail, benches, signs
35 City of La Feria Arroyo Colorado Overlook Point Trail Cameron $200,000 $200,000 New 2.3 mile asphalt trail, parking area, signs
34 City of Denton CCNHC - Davis Trailhead & Trail Denton $199,613 $199,613 New 1.3 mile dirt trail, elevated walkway, restrooms, pavilion
34 Harris County Anderson Trail Harris $200,000 $200,000 New 0.8 mile asphalt trail, signing
34 City of Wylie Municipal Complex Trails Collin $200,000 $200,000 New 0.95 mile concrete trail, bridge, benches, signing
33 City of Austin Heritage Village YMCA Trail Travis $200,000 $0 New 0.6 mile concrete trail
33 Caddo Trail Riders Association Caddo Grassland Equestrian Trails Fannin $81,560 $0 Renovate 18 mile trail, signs, water, hitching posts
33 City of Farmersville Chaparral Trail, Phase III Collin $200,000 $0 Surface 0.7 miles of abandoned railroad, deck/rail bridges, benches, parking
33 City of Marble Falls Backbone Creek Trail Loop Burnet $200,000 $0 New 2.0 miles, resurface 1.1 mile trail, signs
33 City of Princeton Community Park Trail Collin $200,000 $0 New 1.3 mile asphalt/concrete trail, benches, trash cans, exercise station
33 City of Rusk Rusk Recreational Trail Cherokee $159,046 $0 New 0.8 mile asphalt trail, benches, signs, trash cans
32 City of Palestine Reagan Park Recreational Trail Anderson $140,915 $0 New 0.5 mile concrete trail, benches, signs, trash cans
31 East Texas Arboretum Educational Nature Trail, Phase III Henderson $48,000 $0 New 160' concrete trail, parking area, storage shed, signing
30 City of Horseshoe Bay Horseshoe Bay Trail Burnet $120,000 $0 New 1.15 mile natural surface trail, signs
30 Mission Bend Greenbelt Association Bayou Hike/Bike Trail Extension Fort Bend $169,815 $0 New 0.75 mile granite trail, gates, bollards
29 Aransas County Airport Trail Aransas $118,661 $0 New 1.8 mile crushed aggregate trail, bridges
29 Harris County MUD No. 120 MUD 120 Trail Harris $91,434 $0 New 0.5 mile, renovate 0.4 mile concrete trails
28 City of El Paso Tierra Del Este Trail El Paso $200,000 $0 New 1 mile asphalt trail, signs, benches, landscaping
28 City of Electra City Park Trail Wichita $111,138 $0 New 0.45 mile concrete trail, lighting, fitness stations, benches
28 City of Krum Krum Community Trail Denton $199,941 $0 New 0.8 mile concrete trail, parking, sidewalk, signs
27 City of Forney Spellman 43 Acre Amphitheater Trail Kaufman $200,000 $0 New 0.9 mile concrete trail, bridges, lighting
27 City of Seguin Manual C. Castilla Walking Trail Guadalupe $57,602 $0 Resurface 0.25 mile trail, parking area, sidewalk
26 Fort Bend County Camp Cloud YMCA Camp Fort Bend $179,776 $0 New 1 mile asphalt & wood deck trail, benches, signs, trash cans
26 City of Port Lavaca Wilson Field Sports Complex Trails Calhoun $143,886 $0 New 0.7 mile concrete trail in city park
24 City of Hico Hike & Bike Trail Extension Hamilton $128,969 $0 New 0.5 mile, renovate 1 mile asphalt trail, benches, tables, fountain
23 City of Houston Brewster Park Walking Trail Harris $200,000 $0 New 0.4 mile concrete trail, benches, picnic tables, landscaping
23 City of Weslaco City Park Trail Hidalgo $125,320 $0 New 1.4 mile asphalt trail, benches, shade, signs
22 City of Everman Renovation of City Park Tarrant $158,500 $0 Renovate 1 mile trail, restroom, fitness stations
22 Maverick County Elm Creek Walking Trail Maverick $109,536 $0 New 0.2 mile concrete trail, benches, signs along creek
21 City of El Campo West Loop Park Wharton $197,032 $0 New 1.3 mile granite trail in city park
21 City of Jacksonville Athletic Complex Trail Cherokee $187,882 $0 New 0.8 mile concrete trail, benches, signs, trash cans
21 City of Jefferson Trail Connection for Port Jefferson Marion $199,200 $0 New 275' boardwalk, signing, land
21 City of Rowlett Scenic Point Park Trail Dallas $200,000 $0 New 0.4 mile concrete trail, boardwalk, tables, benches, trash cans
20 City of Cedar Hill FM1382 Trail Dallas $200,000 $0  
20 Fort Bend County MUD #143 Fort Bend County MUD #143 Trail Fort Bend $83,928 $0 New 0.9 mile granite trail
20 City of Harlingen Ramsey Nature Park Revitalization Cameron $200,000 $0 Surface/repair 0.9 miles of trail, bridges, signs, parking
20 Harris County MUD No. 365 Jarvis Nature Trail Harris $91,320 $0 New 0.5 mile granite trail, bridge, signs
19 City of Duncanville Lakeside Park Trail Improvements Dallas $200,000 $0 Renovate 0.25 mile trail, bridge
19 Horsepen Bayou MUD Walking Trails of Concord Bridge Harris $135,800 $0 New 0.6 mile concrete trail, fence, fitness equipment, signs
18 Hermann Park Conservancy Sunset Meadow in Hermann Park Harris $93,168 $0 New 619' granite trail, water fountain, benches, signs trash cans
16 Manvel Lions Club Manvel Lions Club Park Brazoria $200,000 $0 New 0.8 mile fly ash trail, parking lot, land
15 Pecan Grove MUD Plantation Memorial Park Trail Rehab Fort Bend $25,520 $0 580' concrete trail
12 City of Galveston East End Lagoon - Big Reef Trail Galveston $192,000 $0 New 400' long pier, parking, boardwalks, signs
10 City of Bridgeport Northwest OHV Park Wise $170,887 $0 Purchase of motor grader to maintain existing motorized trail park
Total Requests = $11,811,830
Total Recommended = $5,776,354