Gov. Nixon announces $2.9 million in grants through Missouri State Parks for trails, playgrounds and other recreation projects statewide

The governor also announces that with opening of Rock Island section next month between Windsor and Kansas City area, Katy Trail will extend statewide.

Communities and organizations throughout the state will receive $2.9 million in grants through Missouri State Parks to increase and enhance recreational opportunities for Missourians.

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon was at a trailhead on the MKT Trail in Columbia last month to announce the grants for 31 projects from the federal Recreational Trails Program and Land Water Conservation Fund, where he was joined by State Parks Director Bill Bryan and Department of Natural Resources Director Harry Bozoian. Both programs are administered by Missouri State Parks.

The city of Columbia received $310,000 in grants for three different projects: $160,000 from the Recreational Trails Program for bridge replacement on the MKT Trail ($150,000) and informational trail kiosks ($10,000), and $150,000 from the Land Water Conservation Fund for Norma Smith Park.

“This funding provides new opportunities for Missourians throughout the Show-Me State to experience the outdoors,” Gov. Nixon said. “By expanding these recreational resources, we are creating healthier, happier communities.”

He said that many of the projects to be funded would expand and enhance trails around the state, giving the more than 27,000 Missourians participating in the Governor’s 100 Missouri Mile Challenge more opportunities to log miles in the challenge.

A total of 16 projects were selected for $1.4 million in Recreational Trails Program funding. The program provides federally funded grants for trail-related land acquisition, development or restoration.

Grants are open to local and state governments, school districts, non-profit and for-profit organizations. Projects are reviewed and scored by the Missouri Trail Advisory Board, whose recommendations are sent to the Federal Highway Administration for final approval.

In addition to the two Columbia projects, the other projects include:

• $150,000 to City of Washington for a 1-mile trail.

• $147,713 to Forest Lake Area Trails System for a .7-mile trail.

• $150,000 to Jefferson City Parks, Recreation and Forestry for a trailhead and amenities.

• $150,000 to City of Kansas City for a 1.3-mile of trail.

• $150,000 to City of Park Hills for a trailhead and amenities.

• $251,789 to Missouri State Parks for statewide trail improvements.

• $110,000 to Missouri State Parks for motorized trail equipment.

• $10,000 to Missouri River Relief for river trail cleanups.

• $10,000 to Friends of Trails End for an informational kiosk.

• $9,750 to Von Holten Ranch, LLC for an educational equestrian obstacle course.

• $59,105 to the Marais des Cygnes Society for a trail and amenities.

• $31,000 to City of Osceola for a water trail.

• $4,059 to the Monroe County Commission for a trailhead.

• $34,360 to Joplin Trails Coalition for a 1.5-mile trail.

Fifteen projects were selected for Land Water Conservation Fund grants, totaling $1.5 million. Land Water Conservation Fund grants are open to local governments and public school districts. The federal funds are made available through the Department of the Interior’s National Park Service.

Projects can be for the development or renovation of outdoor recreational facilities, or for acquisition of park land.

In addition to the Norma Smith Park project in Columbia, the other projects are:

• $149,850 to Silex R-I for Silex R-I Community Track and Softball Field project.

• $150,000 to Cape Girardeau County for South County Playground update.

• $150,000 to City of Brookfield for West Twin Park accessible playground.

• $150,000 to City of Warrensburg for Playgrounds For All, Phase I.

• $150,000 to City of Salem for Salem All-Inclusive Playground.

• $150,000 to North Harrison R-III for North Harrison Sports Complex.

• $150,000 to City of Troy for Crooked Creek.

• $32,810 to City of Osage Beach for Peanick Park Playground enhancement project.

• $82,928 to City of Glasgow for Glasgow Public Pool.

• $10,125 to Malden R-1 for Malden Elementary School Walking Track.

• $38,000 to Cole County for Brooks Park.

• $20,642 to City of Berkeley for Edgewood Park.

• $45,203 to City of Campbell for Campbell ADA project.

• $33,750 to City of Union for Veterans Memorial Park LWCF Playground.

Last month, the 47-mile long Rock Island section of the Katy Trail opened between Windsor and Pleasant Hill, near Kansas City. Completion of this trail extension will now enable hikers and bicyclists to travel across Missouri from the St. Louis area to the Kansas City area.