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Doppelt Grant Awarded to Dallas County Conservation Board for "Connector" Project

Post Date:05/25/2018

2018 National Rails to Trails Conservancy's Dopplet Fund Grant Announces Recipients of its 2018 Doppelt Family Trail Development Fund Grants

 WASHINGTON, D.C.—Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) today announced the recipients of its 2018 Doppelt Family Trail Development Fund grants, with an emphasis on strategic investments that support significant regional and community trail development goals.

 The Doppelt Fund supports small, regional projects that are vital to trail systems but often fall through the cracks of traditional funding streams. RTC received nearly $5.5 million in application requests for the 2018 grant cycle, demonstrating the national reality of unmet trail funding needs.

 “Trail managers commonly express frustration as they seek funding for projects that address important trail maintenance and development needs,” said Eli Griffen, RTC’s manager of trail development resources and the manager of the Doppelt Fund grant program. “These projects are often smaller in scope and scale, making them hard to finance within traditional funding streams. This grant program provides important resources communities need—in some cases, raising awareness of a project within the community, and in others, maintaining trails or providing the match funding necessary to acquire a corridor and build the trail.”

 The 2018 Doppelt Fund grantees mark the largest pool of RTC-funded projects to date, with more than $140,000 invested in 10 projects nationwide. The fund was bolstered by an additional $40,000 legacy gift from North Carolina Rail-Trails, Inc. and a $20,000 gift from an anonymous donor.“We are honored to be selected as one of the ten recipients in the nation to be awarded the 2018 Rails to Trails Conservancy’s Doppelt Fund Grant.

Dallas County Conservation Board (Iowa), receiving $15,000 for the acquisition of six parcels of land required to extend the iconic High Trestle Trail to the Raccoon River Valley Trail north of Des Moines.

 “The projects that we were able to fund this year are incredible,” said Jeff Doppelt, a philanthropist from Great Neck, New York. “Through a relatively small investment, we’re able to complete and connect iconic trails and improve the trail user experience. Hundreds of these types of projects exist all over the country; it’s important that people begin to understand that the need far outweighs the funding available. These projects are essential to building and maintaining the trails that so many of us love and that communities rely upon for recreation, transportation and economic vitality.”

Established in 2015, the Doppelt Family Trail Development Fund is a way to move forward critical projects that enhance health and transportation connectivity in their regions.

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"This $15,000 grant will help us continue to move forward with our Raccoon River Valley Trail to High Trestle Trail Connector project. This 9 mile project will connect two of the premier trail systems in the state. The grant will allow us to acquire some of the last parcels needed for the project. We would then continue with our construction as funds allow, commented Mike Wallace, Director, Dallas County Conservation Board”.

 

To date over 55% of the estimated project costs of $5 million have been raised. The Dallas County Conservation Board is currently in the process of constructing the first 1.56 miles of the trail this summer. This Phase I Construction will start in Perry at 18th street and go east to 130th street. Additional construction phases will happen as additional funds are received. If you would like to contribute towards this important project go to: www.letsconnectdallascounty.com or contact the Dallas County Conservation Board at 515-465-3577.