Coon Rapids trail grant request turned down

The city of Coon Rapids’ request for a state grant to pay for a portion of a trail on 85th Avenue N.W. has been turned down for second time.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources turned down the city’s request for funding through the 2012 local trail connections program of a trail on the south side of 85th from East River Road to the Burlington-Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) Railroad crossing to connect with the Mississippi River Regional Trail.

In a letter to the city, Traci Vibo, DNR Division of Parks and Trails grant coordinator, wrote that 44 applications were received for parks and trail projects totaling over $4 million and only $1 million was available to allocate.

According to Dave Full, city project manager, the trail would have connected to the trail that the city of Fridley completed at Springbrook Nature Center in 2010.

Support for the trail project had come from the city of Fridley as well as Anoka County’s highway and parks departments, Full said.

The total cost of the proposed trail is $280,000, he said.

If the state grant had been approved and the trail constructed, the city would then be able to link it to the Mississippi River Regional Trail with a trail through Kennedy Park, Full said.

The DNR turned down the city’s first request for a grant for this project back in January.

Peter Bodley is at [email protected]