DRESDEN – Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam today announced three grants totaling nearly $800,000 for Dresden and Martin to lengthen and develop recreational trails connecting the communities with the downtowns.
“These greenways and trails not only enhance the pedestrian experience of our communities, but they also provide new recreational and healthy ways for Tennesseans to enjoy their neighborhoods,” Haslam said. “Downtowns are the heart of our cities and towns, and the projects announced today will make important connections between various destinations and the Dresden and Martin downtowns.”
Dresden is receiving a $199,968 Recreational Trails Program (RTP) grant from the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) as well as a $399,706 grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) to dedicate property as park land and convert a former railroad line into a multimodal pedestrian and cycling trail that connects to the heart of downtown Dresden.
Phase I of the Dresden Green Rail Trail project is located southeast of the Farmer’s Market trailhead at Linden Street and will connect to the Festival Park trail head south of Evergreen Street. It includes a ten-foot wide paved trail, decorative gateway entrances, landscaping, and park benches, bicycle racks and signage.
Martin is receiving a $200,000 RTP grant to extend the current Brian Brown Greenway to downtown Martin by constructing a multi-use trail approximately 3,000 feet long and 10 feet wide.
“We are excited to have this additional funding opportunity, which will assist the cities of Martin and Dresden in the development of a variety of new trails,” TDEC Commissioner Bob Martineau said.
The Recreational Trails Program is a federally-funded program established to distribute funding for motorized, non-motorized and diverse recreation trail projects. Recreational Trails Program grants may be used for non-routine maintenance and restoration of existing trails, development and rehabilitation, trailside or trailhead facilities such as restrooms, kiosks and parking lots, construction of new trails and land acquisition for recreational trails or corridors.
The transportation alternative grant is made possible through a federally-funded program administered by TDOT.
“Through these grants, TDOT has funded more than $294 million in non-traditional transportation projects,” TDOT Commissioner John Schroer said. “This program has assisted communities all over the state in their efforts to revitalize downtowns, highlight historic areas, provide alternative means of transportation, and increase opportunities for economic development.”
A variety of activities such as the restoration of historic facilities, bike and pedestrian trails, landscaping and other non-traditional transportation projects are eligible for grant funds under the federal program.
State Sen. John Stevens (R-Huntington) and state Rep. Andy Holt (R-Dresden) represent Weakley County in the Tennessee General Assembly.