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Parks, Trails & Open Lands News

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Parks & Trails Matching Grants Announced

Post Date:01/20/2016 1:27 PM

The Missoula County Parks and Trails Advisory Board and the Board of County Commissioners have awarded $7,500 in matching grants to support two projects in Condon and Missoula.

In Missoula’s Upper Rattlesnake neighborhood, $5,000 has been awarded to Friends of Syringa Park to fund design costs for a proposed bike skills facility. The amount will be matched by the City of Missoula to apply for an additional $10,000 International Mountain Bicycling Association matching grant to cover professional design services for the park. The remainder of the project costs, including materials and construction, will be supported by donations from the Tanner Olson Memorial Foundation, in-kind donations and the support of volunteers.

A bike skills course is a dedicated parks and recreation facility that includes mountain bike trails, jumps, and progressive skills areas for all ages and abilities. Generally, a bike park’s natural vegetation and terrain is left in place to minimize impacts on the environment and the neighborhood. Community demand for bike skills parks has risen substantially in the last decade, offering children and adults another way to play outside and stay active.

In Condon, $2,500 has been awarded to help fund an interpretive trail located on the Swan Valley Elementary School campus. In 2013, the students of Swan Valley Elementary proposed creating a community forest in the existing woodlands on the school property. The school board challenged students to create forest plans for a potential community project. Through a district GIS grant that included mapping software, the students were able to draft several plans.

The board has combined two plans and started implementation, including a local logging contract which is already generating revenue for the school. One of the final stages of the plan is to create an accessible interpretive trail through the forest. The trail will be open to the public and advertised as a community resource for all to enjoy.

To learn more about the County’s Parks and Trails matching grant program, visit our website.

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