Tri-State Trails Convening Community to Make the Economic Case for Trails

August 22, 2016 11:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

CONTACT: Wade Johnston, Regional Trails Coordinator, wade@greenumbrella.org or 513.541.1538, @TriStateTrails – www.tristatetrails.org

TRI-STATE TRAILS CONVENING COMMUNITY TO MAKE THE ECONOMIC CASE FOR TRAILS

Cincinnati, OH – Bike and pedestrian advocates, community stakeholders, and government officials will unite to celebrate trail progress and look toward the future at Green Umbrella’s 4th Annual Regional Trails Summit.  This year’s theme is “Making the Economic Case for Trails” and the event, presented by Green Umbrella and Tri-State Trails with lead sponsorship support from Interact for Health and Human Nature, will take place at Cincinnati Zoo’s Frisch’s Theater from 9am to 3:30pm on Friday, August 26. 

From 2015 to present, trail managers in our region constructed over 7.5 miles of new multi-use trails valued at over $5.5 million, including extensions to regional corridors such as the Little Miami Scenic Trail, Great Miami River Trail, Williamsburg to Batavia Trail, and Cincinnati Connects Urban Trail Loop.  The Greater Cincinnati region now has over 320 miles of multi-use trails, over 80 miles of on-road biking facilities, around 250 miles of hiking trails, and nearly 70 miles of natural surface mountain biking trails—all of which can be found on Tri-State Trails’ interactive trail map hosted at www.MeetMeOutdoors.org.


Image: 2016 Little Miami Scenic Trail Extension, photo courtesy of Great Parks of Hamilton County

“We’ve strategically crafted this year’s Trails Summit agenda to demonstrate how critical it is that tri-state communities invest in active transportation infrastructure,” said Frank Henson, Chair of Tri-State Trails and President of Queen City Bike.  “Creating walkable and bikeable communities helps us remain economically competitive with peer regions.”  The first panel of the Trails Summit will feature perspectives from local developers CMC Properties and Greiwe Development in addition to the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber and University of Cincinnati School of Planning to highlight how trails can be used as an economic development tool.  During lunch, the keynote panel will showcase Cincy Red Bike, International Mountain Biking Association, Cincinnati Connects, and Columbus’ Yay Bikes! to illustrate how trails for different users can interconnect to enhance the active transportation system of a region.  Great Parks of Hamilton County, Wasson Way, Riding Forward, and Southbank Partners will close the panel presentations for the day with a discussion about building public and political support for trails.

Tri-State Trails is poised to announce several exciting trail developments to close the Trails Summit, including its plans to launch the first regional trail measurement program this fall, in partnership with Interact for Health.  “Our trail measurement program will allow us to collect data on trail use and understand the demographics of trail users so we can leverage future investment in regional connectivity,” said Wade Johnston, Regional Trails Coordinator at Green Umbrella.  “We will also recognize 2016’s exemplary trail advocate, project, and organization with inaugural Tri-State Trails awards.”

“Green Umbrella is committed to paving the way for improved access to active transportation options through our Tri-State Trails initiative,” said Kristin Weiss, Executive Director of Green Umbrella.  “Our region has made significant progress over the past year, which is evident through OKI’s increased prioritization of bike and pedestrian projects in their 2040 Long Range Regional Transportation Plan.”

For more information about the 4th Annual Regional Trails Summit or to register, please visit www.GreenUmbrella.org/TrailsSummit.  Registration will remain open through August 24, 2016.  The cost is $45 for Green Umbrella members and $55 for the general public, and breakfast and lunch are included.  All are welcome.

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About Tri-State Trails

An initiative of Green Umbrella and funded by Interact for Health, Tri-State Trails is a coalition of trail advocates, a physical network of trails, and a vision to connect the Greater Cincinnati region.  Our mission is to connect people and places via a regional trails network that promotes vibrant communities through equitable access to active transportation and outdoor recreation.

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