trails bicycleMADISONVILLE, Ky. (2/18/14) — Community Development Director for Madisonville, Daron Jordan, presented information about the Recreational Trails Project for Mahr Park at Hidden Hills Farm, at the public hearing Monday, Feb. 17 held at the City Council Chambers.

“The trail grant itself is administered through Kentucky Department for Local Government and the Federal Highway Administration,” said Jordan. “It is through the highway fund and is known as the Recreational Trails Program, which are funds that Madisonville has tapped into in previous years. So, it’s been a good program for us to utilize for recreational type activities.”

The Recreational Trails Program is a federal-aid assistance program to help states develop and maintain trails for both motorized and non-motorized recreational trails use.

The program provides recreational trail uses such as walking, jogging, bicycling/mountain biking, hiking, ATV, in-line skating, four-wheel driving, off-road motorcycling and equestrian uses.

“There is a minimum of $5,000 request and a maximum request of $100, 000,” said Jordan. “For this project the request does ask for a dollar for dollar match. So, it is a 50/50 cost share. The cost share is made up of either cash, force account, in-kind donations or a combination of the three. It is also a reimbursable project.”

The project's purpose is to create a trail system constructed at Mahr Park located at Hidden Hills Farm.

The trail system would consist of both nature and asphalt trails that will range in a total of five miles.

The asphalt portion will run 1.5 miles throughout the property and consist of a 10’ width for allowing biking, walking and hiking. This will also allow access for those with mobility issues and ADA accessible.

“The project itself will be a trail system to be constructed within Mahr Park at Hidden Hills Farm, that approximates five miles of trail,” said Jordan. “It will be a multi-use design aspect. A portion of the trail will be asphalt that will allow both able bodied and disabled individuals to use and the other portion will be nature trail mulch.”

The design for the nature portion of the trail system will encompass three and a half miles and a width of eight feet, depending on the topography. The trail will also be designed to have a low impact on the environment and allow hiking and walking in a more natural state.

“The out lay of the trail design and the land that the Mahr family has left the city allows us to utilize the topography,” said Jordan.

The grant application will be amounted to $275,000 with a $100,000 being requested in Recreational Trail Program funds and $175,000 from matching funds, force account and in-kind donations.

“The project is also a permanent trail easement or deed restriction,” said Jordan. “It must be recorded prior to receiving reimbursement, which is something new put into place by the Federal Highway Department. So, this project would have to stay a recreational type of project for this.”

When the Madisonville City Council convened after the public hearing, the council approved the grant application.

Amber Averitt
SurfKY News Reporter

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