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Carolina Thread Trail announces $755,000 for trail projects to 16 partners

More spaces to safely access and enjoy nature will soon be on the way thanks to the Carolina Thread Trail.
Published: Jan. 25, 2022 at 6:49 AM EST
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - More spaces to safely access and enjoy nature will soon be on the way thanks to the Carolina Thread Trail. As Carolinians continue to face challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, finding safe places to gather and recreate with family and friends is top of mind.

To help, the Governing Board of the Thread Trail recently approved the distribution of $752,500 in grant funding for expanding and advancing public trails across 15 counties in North and South Carolina.

The Thread Trail’s Implementation Grant Program provides funding to communities and nonprofit organizations to support trail construction, design, land acquisition and corridor planning. Over the past 11 years, the Thread Trail has awarded nearly $8 million in catalytic grants to communities. Currently, 350 miles of greenways and trails, as well as 170 miles of blueways, are open to the public within the Thread Trail system.

The grant award amount, community information and the use of the grants follow:

BELMONT, N.C. - $30,000 Acquisition

To help with land acquisition for the construction of Abbey Creek Greenway, which runs parallel to Wilkinson Blvd., and will connect to Loftin Park on the Catawba River.

BESSEMER CITY, N.C. - $15,000 Trail Corridor Plan

To conduct a trail corridor study to determine the best alignment for a trail extension at the South-Ridge Parkway Industrial Park that will serve residents and employees and approach the western side of Gastonia with an eventual connection underneath I-85.

CATAWBA LANDS CONSERVANCY - $5,000 Kayak Launch

To construct a new canoe/kayak launch at Spencer Mountain River Access, the northern-most paddling input along the South Fork Catawba River Blueway. The launch will improve safe access to the blueway for residents and visitors to Gaston County.

CONCORD, N.C. - $30,000 Design

To design an extension of Irish Buffalo Creek Greenway, connecting Caldwell Park to Lincoln Street and Melrose Drive.

CRAMERTON, N.C. - $86,000 Construction

To improve the Rocky Branch Trail at Stuart Cramer High School, which provides a critical trail connection between Cramerton and Belmont.

GREAT FALLS, S.C. - $30,000 Design

To design the 3.5-mile Great Falls Rail Trail along the Catawba River, which will provide important pedestrian and bicycle access to the future Dearborn Island State Park and its recreational opportunities.

IREDELL COUNTY, N.C. - $30,000 Design

To design a 1.4-mile extension of Fourth Creek Greenway between Big Leaf Slopes Park and Greenbriar Road, where it will also connect to the future extension of the Broad Street segment of the Statesville Greenway resulting in 7 miles of continuous trail.

KINGS MOUNTAIN, N.C. – $30,000 Trail Corridor Study

To conduct a design and feasibility study that explores future segments and connections of the Kings Mountain Gateway Trail between the Town of Kings Mountain and Crowders Mountain State Park.

LOWELL, N.C. - $8,000 Design

To fund the design of a potential future extension of the South Fork Trail, which facilitates an eventual connection to Poston Park.

MARSHVILLE, N.C. - $14,500 Construction

To fund construction of the Town of Marshville Connector trail. Funding will improve the trail within the Municipal Park, improve crosswalks, and expand the trail by connecting to a nearby neighborhoods.

MOUNT PLEASANT, N.C. - $47,000 Construction

To expand the existing parking lot at Buffalo Creek Preserve, therefore increasing access to the preserve and and existing Carolina Thread Trail.

ROCK HILL, S.C. - $30,000 Design

To design a 0.2-mile extension of the Jack White Trail along Dave Lyle Blvd., which facilitates a connection of the Manchester Creek trail corridor from the Catawba River to downtown Rock Hill.

SHELBY, N.C. - $200,000 Construction

To construct a 0.8-mile segment of rail trail that will connect an existing Thread Trail to Uptown Shelby. This is the first phase of an eventual 11-mile rail trail connection from Shelby to the S.C. state line.

SPENCER, N.C. - $50,000 Construction

To construct the Yadkin River Park Trailhead and Greenway Connector, a first step toward providing a connection between Spencer and Salisbury and across the Wil-Cox Bridge to Davidson County.

RICHFIELD, N.C. – FALCON TRAIL $100,000 Construction

To construct the 2.75-mile Tom Webb segment of the Falcon Trail, extending the existing trail from Richfield Park.

WAXHAW, N.C. - $50,000 Construction

To fund construction of the 12 Mile Creek Greenway, formerly a private trail that will be improved and made accessible to the public. The trail will expand the existing portion of the 12 Mile Creek Greenway, which crosses the N.C.-S.C. state line.

Town leaders in Spencer say the grant will enable them to plan a groundbreaking for the project in the spring or early summer.

“We have been trying to fund the project primarily through philanthropic gifts and grants, and the Carolina Thread Trail grant is a significant grant that will help offset the cost of construction of the trailhead,” said Special Projects Planner Joe Morris. “It puts us in a strong position of having a groundbreaking in the spring, early summer, to begin the project.”

“Davidson County was able to move ahead with a lot of the vision to include the Wil-Cox bridge itself and now we’re in the position to help bring the other side of the river to life with our trailhead and eventually painting a picture of a big recreation vision here in Spencer,” said Town Manager Peter Franzese.

For more information about the Thread Trail’s implementation grant program, visit www.carolinathreadtrail.org or contact Carolina Thread Trail Director, Bret Baronak at 704-376-2556 ext. 216 or bret@carolinathreadtrail.org.

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