Federal grant to route $3.8 million toward Flint Hills Nature Trail

A Kansas Department of Transportation administered grant will pump another $3.8 million into an ongoing construction project on the Flint Hills Nature Trail.

KDOT announced Friday afternoon that the trail, a portion of which crosses Osage County east to west, was among 25 transportation initiatives that have been selected for funding through the federal Transportation Alternatives Program.

Eligible projects include facilities for pedestrians and bicycles, scenic or historical highway programs, landscaping and scenic beautification, historic preservation of transportation facilities, conversion of abandoned railway corridors to trails, control or removal of outdoor advertising, archaeological planning and research related to transportation, and the Safe Routes to School program.

The federal request for the Flint Hills Nature Trail project is $3,046,463, KDWPT’s matching portion is $761,616, totaling $3,808,079.

“We received 48 applications and chose projects that would best strengthen non-motorized transportation for Kansans of all ages and abilities,” said Mike Spadafore, KDOT coordinator for the Transportation Alternatives Program. “We were pleased to see a wide variety of applications, and so many that used local collaboration that showed public support of their projects.”

Each project sponsor must commit to a minimum 20 percent match.

Construction has been ongoing over the last year on the Flint Hills Nature Trail near Ottawa and Pomona using a combination of federal, state and local funds. See related stories here.

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