Connections: The Next Step
The former Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad corridor extends from Windsor to Beaufort, Missouri. Once completed, the 144-mile Rock Island Trail State Park will create the opportunity to develop a 450-mile statewide public trail loop by connecting to more than 240 miles of Katy Trail State Park.
The Missouri State Parks Foundation has joined with 20 partners and allies across the state whose collective goal is to secure the Rock Island Railroad corridor for future development as the Rock Island Trail State Park.
The Missouri General Assembly has created a fund into which philanthropic support for the development of the Rock Island Trail State Park can be deposited. The Missouri State Park Foundation's campaign for Connections: The Next Step seeks to raise $20 Million to enable the State to accept the Rock Island Trail State Park.
First Things First
The corridor to develop the Rock Island Trail State Park will be gifted to the State by its current owner, Missouri Central Railroad-a wholly-owned subsidiary of Ameren, a major regional utility that serves large areas in Missouri and Illinois. But funds must be raised to ensure the process of converting the former rail line into a public trail has support and funding.
Some of the major expenses will include fencing and installation, bridge and tunnel repairs and maintenance and long-term operating expenses. Once private funding is in place, adjacent towns will be able to access federal funds to develop their portions of the trail.
Missouri State Parks: Looking to the Future
To learn about the Missouri State Parks vision for the Rock Island Corridor, including an interactive map, visit here