Grant paves way for Oak Ridge Trail construction

Thanks to a grant awarded to the City of Fayetteville, trail-goers will soon have a new half-mile branch that runs through the University of Arkansas.

The Oak Ridge Trail will connect with Frisco Trail and continue west along the north side of Center Street to Harmon Avenue. The trail will then follow a vacant right of way through the wooded hillside between California Boulevard and the UA Business School and ending at Garland Avenue near Pomfret Hall on the UA campus. A future phase of the trail will extend north between Stadium Drive and Garland Avenue and connect to Razorback Stadium.

Our city’s trail system is no stranger to the Arkansas Recreational Trails Grant Program but never has it been awarded as much as it was this year. The $116,543 federal grant is part of approximately $1 million that is awarded to help fund projects throughout the state.

The grant requires 20-percent local matching funds and these funds will be split between the City of Fayetteville and the University of Arkansas, with each providing 10-percent. The entire cost of the Oak Ridge Trail project is estimated at $185,000, so the remaining funds needed will also be split equally between the city and the UA. The total cost to both is estimated to be $34,233 each.

“The Oak Ridge Trail will provide a safe alternative transportation route from the primary north-south trail of the system to the University of Arkansas and Fayetteville High School,” said Fayetteville Communications Director Lindsley Smith in a statement released last week.

The trail will be designed by the city’s trails coordinator and other engineering staff. Construction will be provided by the city’s in-house trail construction crew with any necessary right of way and construction assistance provided by the University of Arkansas.

Recreational Trails Grant awards to the City of Fayetteville

1997: $20,000 to construct three trailhead kiosks at Lake Fayetteville
2002: $51,247 for the Lake Fayetteville Spillway Bridge
2003: $20,000 combined with the 2002 funds to be used for the Lake Fayetteville Spillway Bridge
2007: $33,600 to replace an existing narrow trail bridge on Mud Creek Trail
2008: $60,000 to extend Mud Creek Trail across Old Missouri Road to connect to Sweetbriar Drive?
2009: $116,543 for construction of Oak Ridge Trail