Thursday, April 21, 2016

Comment on National Park Service Trail Study

The National Park Service recently published a study of their paved trails in the DC Metro area, the DRAFT Paved Trails Study. "The purpose of this study is to assess current trail and trail system conditions, and recommend steps the NPS and/or other agencies can take to improve existing trails and to create an integrated, inter jurisdictional network of urban trails for recreation, multi-modal transportation and education."

Your input is needed. Comments are being accepted until May 19. From NPS:
National Park Service News Release


Contact: Jarod Perkioniemi, 202-619-7186,

National Park Service identifies priorities for interconnected regional paved trail system in the Washington Metro Area. Public invited to comment on the paved trail study through May 19

WASHINGTON – The National Park Service (NPS) invites the public to comment on a new paved trail study, which reviews the region’s multi-jurisdictional trail system and identifies gaps in the network. The effort will help the NPS prioritize opportunities to expand multi-use trails in D.C. area national parks as funding becomes available. Comments will be accepted April 19 - May 19, 2016.

To develop the study, the NPS conducted a comprehensive examination of its regional trail network conditions and of NPS and other federal regulations and policies that guide trail planning. Stakeholder outreach and local government trail plans and priorities, including major trail gaps and areas for potential partnership and collaboration, also informed the study. As a result, the study identifies 16 priority projects, selected by criteria including safety, user volume and whether a trail crosses more than one jurisdiction.

The NPS is committed to providing enjoyable outdoor trail experiences that consider the recreation and transportation needs of all users. Today, there are more than 90 miles of paved trails in Greater Washington-area national parks including the Anacostia Riverwalk Trail, C&O Canal Towpath, Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail, Fort Circle Hiker-Biker Trail, Mount Vernon Trail and Rock Creek Park Multi-use Trail. The last paved trail study was conducted in 1990.

Members of the public, agencies and organizations are encouraged to provide comments online through the National Park Service Planning, Environment, and Public Comment (PEPC) website, which is used by the agency to manage official correspondence. To provide comments, visit the project website,

Written comments may also be mailed to:

Tammy Stidham
National Park Service - National Capital Region
1100 Ohio Drive SW
Washington, D.C. 20242

Mailed comments must be postmarked by May 19, 2016, to receive consideration.

Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment – including your personal identifying information – may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

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Yesterday the National Park Service gave a presentation at the VDOT Advisory Committee meeting in Richmond about the ongoing paved trail study. The committee was assured that comments do make a difference. Two major trails in the DC area were built based on the support and encouragement that WABA provided.


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