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Published on May 24, 2024
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department Invests $4.5 Million in Statewide Trail EnhancementsSource: City of Kyle

Texans looking to hit the trails have something to celebrate as the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department lays down the dough for some fresh greenways and upgrades, clocking in at a hefty $4.5 million. The cash flow, confirmed during Thursday's meeting of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission, means 16 juicy projects across the Lone Star State will get the green light, stretching from natural surface pathways to multipurpose motorways—so whether you're rolling on two wheels, four wheels, or just your own two feet, there's a piece of the pie for you.

The moolah comes courtesy of the National Recreational Trails Fund, which siphons part of the federal gas tax into these open-air escapades, ensuring that die-hard offroaders and serene strollers alike can snag a slice of outside action; and let's not forget, Texas bigwigs have tossed an extra million per annum into the kitty too. According to the agency's press release, there's even more in the pot this round, with some past projects wrapping up under budget or getting the kibosh, freeing up another $900k to sprinkle on this year's trail mix.

Getting down to brass tacks, Bandera County's Albert and Bessie Kronkosky State Natural Area is banking $300k for six miles of scenic stomping grounds, while the Boy Scouts' Longhorn Council in Bell County gears up to revamp Camp Tahuaya's trails and set up a new pavilion with $280,148 in their back pocket. Over in Eagle Lake, a $294,040 shot in the arm from the fund means a wildlife viewing extravaganza is on the horizon, complete with boardwalks to keep your boots mud-free. Circle these projects, folks—they're just the beginning.

And the trailblazing doesn't stop: Hays County has big plans with not one, but two grants lined up; Texas State University snags $135,740 to carve out a .95-mile chunk of the San Marcos Outer Loop Trail, and in a nearby corridor, the county itself is breaking ground on the trail's Presa Grande Segment, carving a fresh 1.8-mile path with benches to boot, and a sweet $300,000 pad to bankroll it. Meanwhile, Montgomery County's own Sam Houston Trails Coalition, Inc. nabs a modest $96,000—pocket change compared to some, but enough to roll out the heavy machinery for trail maintenance, proving even the smaller grants pack a punch.

So whether it's taking a gander at the wilderness from a new boardwalk in Waller County, thanks to a $184,000 helping hand, or ambling over a fresh chunk of trail in Pecos City courtesy of a $66,546 chunk of change, the message is clear: Texas is forging full steam ahead on its promise to keep the great outdoors, well, great. And for the full run-down of who's getting what and where it's going, you can mosey over to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department's announcement for the nitty gritty of these projects. Saddle up, y'all—it's about to get scenic.