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DNR awards $350,000 for continued development of Iron Belle Trail

Grant recipients map showing counties where projects are occcuring at the Iron Belle Trail (Courtesy: Michigan Department Of Natural Resources)

(WPBN/WGTU) -- The Michigan Department of Natural Resources awarded 18 recipients from across the state for the continued development of Michigan's Iron Belle Trail.

According to the DNR, recipients were each awarded amounts up to $30,000 for route planning, engineering, designing projects or trail signage. The total amount of awards given out came to $350,000. These fund were part of the 2015 budget for the non-motorized trail program.

"We are excited to announce the grant recipients for 2016," said DNR state trails coordinator Paul Yauk." There is still a lot of work to do to complete both the hiking and bicycling portions of the Iron Belle Trail, but much progress has been made, and that's due in large part of the hard work and dedication of our many local partners."

Facts about the Iron Belle Trail:

  • Trail stretches from Belle Isle in Detroit to Ironwood in the western Upper Peninsula
  • In current proposed state: Hiking route will include 1,259 miles (72 percent completed) -- Bicycling route will have 774 miles (58 percent completed)
  • Federal, state, and local units of government are working to complete Michigan's newest (and longest) trail by building upon Michigan's extensive existing trail network

The following is a list of counties where the trail projects will be funded:

  1. Orion Township (Oakland County): $25,000 to assist with planning, designing and engineering of the trail segment.
  2. Polly Ann Trail Council (Oakland County): $15,000 for trail signage, including information on locations, local points of interest and trail connections.
  3. Grand Blanc Township (Genesee County): $7,000 for planning, designing and engineering of trail segments.
  4. Genesee County Parks (Genesee County): $7,000 for planning, designing and engineering of trail segments
  5. City of Frankenmuth (Saginaw County): $9,000 for trail signage
  6. Bridgeport Township (Saginaw County): $6,800 for trail signage
  7. County of Saginaw (Saginaw County): $25,000 to assist with planning, designing and engineering of the trail segment and four trail signs.
  8. Alabaster Township (Iosco County): $7,200 for trail signage
  9. Oscoda Township (Iosco County): $27,000 to assist with planning, designing and engineering of the trial segment (phase three of the Iosco Exploration Trail)
  10. County of Otsego (Otsego County): $30,000 for design and engineering of the trail segment
  11. North County Trail Association (Luce County): $30,000 for Environmental Impact Statement studies and design and engineering of the bridge that extends over the Blind Sucker River for the North County Trail.
  12. North County Trail Association (various counties): $6,500 for signage, including trail connector and location information for 10 sites along the North County Trail.
  13. Michigan Western Gateway Trail Authority (Gogebic County): $24,770 to assist with easement acquisition costs for the trail segment.
  14. City of Gladstone (Delta County): $21,500 to assist with engineering costs on the Little Bay de Noc trail segment.
  15. North Country TrailAssociation(Newaygo, Kent and Barry counties): $30,000 to assist with North Country Trail route planning in three counties.
  16. Village of Concord (Jackson County): $20,000 to assist with a trail-surfacing project on the village of Concord section of rail-trail that connects with the state's Falling Waters Trail.
  17. Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation (Washtenaw County): $30,000 to assist with design and engineering of the trail segment.
  18. Department of National Resources - Parks and Recreation Division: $5,230 for statewide signage



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