• Mon August 24 2020
  • Posted Aug 30, 2020

The Boone County Conservation Department is pleased to announce that they have received a $25,000 grant from the Wellmark Foundation’s Community Health Request program to be applied towards the design and construction of a new 2.1-mile paved trail. The trail would extend from the High Trestle Trail at QF Lane, north toward Swede Point Park, in southern Boone County.

Wellmark’s Foundation Manager, Gina Rooney, stated “We are delighted in the work you are doing in Iowa to create an environment which encourages better health and wellness for all. We look forward to the impact this project will have on generations to come.” County Conservation Director Tanner Scheuermann thanked Wellmark for the grant. “With the Wellmark gift we are one step closer to offering another option for trail users to experience the beauty of our area and connect to one of our conservation assets, Swede Point Park.”

The trails initiative is guided by the Boone County Trails Advisory Committee (BCTAC), a nine-member volunteer committee with representatives from across the county. Boone County Chamber Executive Director and committee Chair Kurt Phillips added, “This new section of trail will allow families to stay at Swede Point Park and safely bike to the High Trestle Trail, or take a day trip from one of the communities along the trail up to the park to enjoy nature, hike or just relax.”

The trails initiative has raised over $250,000 since the initiative was launched in 2011. Along with the Wellmark grant the group has also secured a $100,000 grant from the Central Iowa Regional Transportation Planning Alliance (CIRTPA) and is currently working on finalizing the details for another substantial grant.

“The High Trestle Trail to Swede Point Park alignment is just the start of what we hope becomes a safe and enjoyable pathway that will extend all the way up to Boone. We are still working with landowners to determine that exact alignment, but much of it is coming together”. Phillips added, “Aside from our applications for the larger state and federal grants to help design and build the trail, our local fundraising will continue. Those dollars will help keep our engineering firm on contract and moving the project forward.”

Snyder and Associates out of Ankeny, Iowa has been handling the property research, trail development , public input sessions and grant applications for BCTAC since 2017.B






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