Commission Agenda Item No. 5
Presenter: Trey Cooksey

Texas Statewide Recreational Trails Grants Funding
Recommended Approval of Trail Construction, Renovation, and Acquisition Projects
May 22, 2019

I.      Executive Summary: With this item, the staff seeks to award federal funds allocated under the National Recreational Trails Fund (NRTF) grants for trail construction, renovation and acquisition projects. This item obligates federal National Recreational Trails Funds to eligible trail projects based upon the recommendations of the Texas Statewide Trails Advisory Committee.

II.     Discussion: The NRTF comes from a portion of the federal gas tax generated by gasoline purchases to utilize recreational off-highway vehicles (OHV) 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 considers state population and sales of fuel for off-road recreational vehicles. Nationwide, the program was appropriated $85 million for federal fiscal year (FY) 2019; Texas’ share of these funds is $3,954,874 plus an additional $303,491 of carryover funds from last year making the total $4,258,365. Seven percent of the state’s annual apportionment ($279,638) is utilized to cover costs to administer the program, leaving $3,978,727 to fund projects. Several projects funded in previous years were completed under budget and four projects were cancelled, creating another $700,000 available for re-allocation this year. The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) has been utilizing the re-allocated funding to fund trail improvements in state parks. The result is a total of $4,678,727 of federal funding available to fund eligible trail construction projects.

The program has an annual deadline of February 1st for local sponsors to submit trail funding proposals. Fifty-five projects were submitted for funding consideration requesting $9,651,516 in funds. Projects were evaluated and scored by the Texas Trails Advisory Committee. Recommendations are to fund 22 of the projects totaling $3,817,376 of federal funding assistance.

The Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act that created this fund stipulates that states must have a trails advisory committee made up of various trail user group representatives to be eligible to receive the federal funds. The purpose of the trails advisory committee is to provide guidance in the distribution of these funds. The nine-member Texas Statewide Trails Advisory Committee met in March 2019 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 upon 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 designated as 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 $400,000 per project versus $200,000 for non-motorized proposals.

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

"Funding for 22 projects recommended in Exhibit A in the amount of $3,817,376 and state park trail improvements in the amount of $700,000 is approved."

Attachment – 1

  1. Exhibit A – Ranking of 2019 Recreational Trails Grant Proposals

Commission Agenda Item No. 5
Exhibit A

Ranking of 2019 Recreational Trails Grant Proposals
Score Sponsor Project Name County Total Cost Funds Recommended Project Description
54 Texas Motorized Trails Coalition, Inc. Escondido Draw Recreation Area Crockett $ 498,700.00 $ 399,000.00 Four miles of new OHV trails, resurface of trailhead roads with asphalt, endangered species resource survey, trail rider educational program, bathrooms, fencing, and project management
54 Texas Trails Education and Motorized Management -TXTEAMM Texas OHV Safety Education Program Medina $ 79,800.00 $ 63,900.00 OHV safety education program, instructors travel and associated expenses
53 Clarksville Northeast Texas Trail Clarksville Red River $ 250,000.00 $ 200,000.00 New 5.8-mile rails-to-trails conversion, bridge repair, and signage
53 Rio Bravo Adventure Park Rio Bravo Adventure Park Improvements -Phase 1 Harris $ 496,900.00 $ 397,500.00 Renovate 8 miles of trail, drainage culverts, bridge, fencing, transformer for electrical service, lighting, and rental of trail maintenance equipment
52 Chaparral Rails to Trails, Inc. Northeast Texas Trail (Wolfe City Section) Hunt $ 250,000.00 $ 200,000.00 New 1.06-mile rails-to-trails conversion including clearing, grading, embankment work, asphalt overlay, safety bollards, and road crossings
52 El Paso San Felipe Park OHV Trails El Paso $ 500,000.00 $ 400,000.00 Ten new miles of 5-footwide OHV trail, youth rider’s .25- mile trail, new ADA-compliant restrooms, picnic shelters, signage, and fencing
52 National Park Service Lake Meredith National Recreation Area Harbor Bay Trail Improvement and Maintenance Project Hutchinson $ 157,100.00 $ 112,500.00 Renovate 5.25-mile natural surface multi-use trail
51 Annona Northeast Texas Trail (Annona Section) Red River $ 250,000.00 $ 200,000.00 New 3.8-mile rails-to-trails conversion including clearing, grading, safety bollards, and road crossings
51 Pines and Prairies Land Trust Trail Restoration at the Colorado River Refuge (CRR) Bastrop $ 22,226.00 $ 17,776.00 Reroute of 240 feet of trail near trailhead with erosion controls, fencing, trash cans, and kiosk maps
50 Avery Northeast Texas Trail (Avery Section) Red River $ 218,000.00 $ 174,400.00 New 4.01-mile rails-to-trails conversion including clearing, grading, bridge repair and railings, safety bollards, and road crossings
50 Jacksboro Twin Lakes Moto Trail Jack $ 291,700.00 $ 218,600.00 Construct a new 5-mile trail for motorized use with controlled entry gate, parking lot, and equipment rental
49 Northeast Texas Trail Coalition Northeast Texas Trail (Clarksville to Hwy 82) Lamar $ 250,000.00 $ 200,000.00 New 1.9-mile rails-to-trails conversion including clearing, grading, bridge repair and railings, safety bollards, and road crossings
49 Red River County Northeast Texas Trail (Red River County Section) Red River $ 250,000.00 $ 200,000.00 New 3.63-mile rails-to-trails conversion including the clearing, grading, bridge repair and railings, safety bollards, signage, and road crossings
49 Trinity Trail Preservation Association Trinity Trail Culvert Remediation Collin $ 63,600.00 $ 48,400.00 Clear silt from 11 culverts with upstream and downstream drainage remediation, and replace two pairs of culverts with a low-water crossing articulated concrete mat
48 Memorial Park Conservancy Memorial Park North West Trail Rehabilitation FY19 Harris $ 79,900.00 $ 66,200.00 Renovation of 1.1 miles of natural surface trail, including the elevation and crowning of multi-use trails, footbridge replacement, and improvements to stormwater management
48 Turnback Canyon Trail Conservancy Turnback Canyon Trail - Phase 1A Travis $ 61,549.00 $ 49,300.00 Two new miles of natural surface multi-use trail, trail bridges, benches, pet waste stations, and trail markers
47 Houston Audubon Society Winters Bayou Bird Sanctuary Loop Trail San Jacinto $ 83,600.00 $ 48,600.00 New 900-foot trail, renovate 1 mile of trail, 500 feet of boardwalk, and a trail bridge
46 Levelland Lobo Lake Trail Hockley $ 76,500.00 $ 61,200.00 Renovate and expand .3-mile multi-use concrete trail with benches, and trash receptacles
45 Hill Country Conservancy Violet Crown Trail Phase 3 Travis $ 393,200.00 $ 200,000.00 New 3-mile multi-use natural surface trail
45 Trophy Club Trophy Club Park Denton $ 200,000.00 $ 160,000.00 Renovate .9 miles of asphalt road surface and replacement of three pavilions
44 Kyle Spring Branch Segment of Plum Creek Trail Hays $ 400,000.00 $ 200,000.00 New 1.25-mile segment of 8 feet wide multi-use concrete trail.
44 Port Lavaca Bayfront Park Trail Calhoun $ 732,800.00 $ 200,000.00 New 1-mile walking trail with solar lighting, benches, a water fountain, bike rack amenities, and connection to existing amenities
43 Greenbelt Alliance of Denton County Denton Greenbelt Renovations Denton $ 187,900.00 $ 0.00 Renovate 11 miles of trail, signage, covered picnic table, hitching rails, pavilion, trail tools
42 Allen Rowlett Trail Connection 2019 Collin $ 348,600.00 $ 0.00 New 2,000 feet of 12-foot-wide concrete, multi-use hike/bike trail with a pedestrian bridge, and elevated walkway
41 New Boston Scout Lake Trailhead Bowie $ 250,000.00 $ 0.00 New 0.33-mile asphalt trail, boardwalk, picnic tables, trash cans, pavilion, and bathrooms
41 San Marcos River Foundation Purgatory Creek Public Trail Hays $ 250,000.00 $ 0.00 New 2-mile natural surface multi-use trail with three hardened segments under bridges
36 Floresville River Park Trail Wilson $ 165,800.00 $ 0.00 New 5,560 feet of multi-use trail loop with benches, shade structure, and picnic tables
35 Corrigan City of Corrigan - West Park Polk $ 230,000.00 $ 0.00 New 5,500 feet of multi-use asphalt trail with commercial trash receptacles, park benches, and way-finding signage
35 Del Rio Carranza Park Trail Renovation Project Val Verde $ 240,000.00 $ 0.00 Renovate .25-mile multi-use trail, ADA-compliant picnic tables, bike racks, dog waste systems, thermoplastic receptacles, trail signage, and solar path lighting
33 Willow Waterhole Greenspace Conservancy Willow Trail Harris $ 270,500.00 $ 0.00 New .3-mile multi-use concrete trail with benches, signs, trash receptacles, bike racks, and trailhead
32 Carthage Carthage City Trail Panola $ 322,400.00 $ 0.00 New 5,510 feet of multi-purpose concrete looped trail with trail benches and interpretive signage
29 Cedar Park Lakeline Park Trail - Phase 1 Williamson $ 916,000.00 $ 0.00 New 1.13-mile concrete trail
29 Krum Eastside Park Trail System Improvements - Phase 1 Denton $ 395,400.00 $ 0.00 New 0.38-mile multi-use concrete trail connecting to an existing trail, erosion control materials, shade trees, resource surveys, and engineering
28 Texarkana Cowhorn Creek Trail Bowie $ 223,000.00 $ 0.00 New 1,600 feet of asphalt multi-use trail with interactive recreational equipment, lighting, benches, and landscaping
27 Dalworthington Gardens Gardens Park - Phase II Tarrant $ 135,900.00 $ 0.00 New 1,900 feet of trail with drainage and culvert replacement, ADA picnic station, informational kiosk, trail bench stations, exercise stations, and additional ADA parking
26 Marble Falls Parkview Park Hike and Bike Trail Burnet $ 256,400.00 $ 0.00 New .625-mile decomposed granite trail with signs, trail heads, restroom, exercise stations, boundary markers, and lighting
26 Palestine City Lakes Trails -Phase 1 Anderson $ 250,000.00 $ 0.00 Renovate .941-mile natural surface trail to 6-foot-wide decomposed granite surface, trail edging, trash receptacles, benches, and signage
25 Lewisville Parks and Recreation Valley Vista Nature Park and Trails Denton $ 250,000.00 $ 0.00 New .5-mile decomposed granite trail with benches, bike racks, signage, and a bird blind
25 North Texas Rural Rail Transportation District Wichita Valley Daylight Trail Improvements Wichita $ 250,000.00 $ 0.00 Renovate 6.55 miles of trail with decomposed granite, culvert replacement, and drainage improvement
25 Poteet Poteet Municipal Park Phase II Atascosa $ 71,600.00 $ 0.00 New .57-mile multi-use decomposed granite trail with benches, bike racks, trash receptacles and trail map signage
24 Seabrook Galveston Bay Trail Connection Harris $ 201,800.00 $ 0.00 New 1.4-mile decomposed granite trail, two pedestrian bridges, signs, benches, garbage cans, and parking
23 Temple Friar's Creek Trail Extension Bell $ 123,300.00 $ 0.00 New .4-mile concrete trail, benches, signage, pet waste stations, trash receptacles, and drinking fountains
22 Justin Garrett Trail Denton $ 253,600.00 $0.00 New 2,530 feet of multi-use concrete trail
22 Rollingwood Trail Connections Travis $ 255,600.00 $ 0.00 New 792 feet of concrete trail and 792 feet of crushed stone trail, retaining walls, and landscaping
20 Mackenzie Municipal Water Authority Lake Mackenzie OHV Trail System Improvements Briscoe $ 250,000.00 $ 0.00 Renovate 35-mile OHV trail system, construct a new restroom, surface access road, and purchase of trail tools and safety equipment
20 Paso del Norte Community Foundation Playa Drain Trail El Paso $ 679,500.00 $ 0.00 New 1.93-mile asphalt trail with concrete curbing
19 Cibolo Town Creek Trail--Phase 1 Guadalupe $ 911,100.00 $ 0.00 New .65-mile concrete trail
17 Colleyville Bedford to Nature Center Tarrant $ 1,747,600.00 $ 0.00 New 1-mile trail and sidewalk
17 Lago Vista Cedar Breaks Park Travis $ 445,100.00 $ 0.00 New 0.6-mile decomposed granite trail, new 0.3-mile concrete trail, benches, picnic stations, trash cans, pet waste stations, scent garden, solar lighting, restrooms, parking, and bike racks
16 Galveston County Parks and Cultural Services Bayside Regional Park Trail Galveston $ 266,570.00 $ 0.00 New 1.75-mile multi-use decomposed granite trail with lighting, benches, bike racks, trash cans, and pet waste stations
16 Jersey Village Jersey Meadow Trail Harris $ 236,500.00 $ 0.00 New .622-mile multi-use concrete trail connecting to a current trail system
16 Viridian Municipal Management District Viridian-River Legacy Connector Trail Tarrant $ 664,400.00 $ 0.00 New 1.3-mile concrete trail with informational kiosks, signage, benches, and waste receptacles
15 Sam Houston Trails Coalition Richards-Raven Trail - Phase IV Walker $ 250,000.00 $ 0.00 New 16.32-mile equestrian trail with necessary bridges, culverts, water control structures, and signage, and trailhead with informational kiosk
12 League City Hometown Heroes Park 5K Loop Trail Galveston $1,022,900.00 $ 0.00 New 1.25-mile decomposed granite trail with reinforced concrete curb borders, bike racks, shaded bench, drinking fountain, signage, and trees
11 Seguin Seguin Recreational Trail Safety Project Guadalupe $ 43,677.00 $ 0.00 Purchase and installation of 12 trail cameras
            Total Requests = $9,651,516
** Bold = Motorized Trail Request        
            Total Recommended = $3,817,376