What will be achieved with the funding?

Funding necessary to convert the rail to trail will include:

  • Site Preparation

  • Signage

  • Security equipment

  • Insurance and liability costs

  • Fencing for property owners

  • Bridge repairs and maintenance

  • Staffing

  • Park Ranger Vehicles

  • Initial Trail development 

Why Missouri needs the Rock Island Trail State Park

  • The Rock Island Trail State Park will traverse 23 towns, providing a safe, non-motorized path to school, work, stores and restaurants within each town and from town to town.

  • Approximately 41% of all Missourians will live within 50 miles of the expanded trail network.

  • With the addition of the 144-mile Rock Island Trail State Park, Missouri is a national showcase for trails, with the largest network in the United States.

  • Investments in this campaign will help make Missouri a destination spot for outdoor enthusiasts from outside the state and help scale-up economic investments in rural areas of the State.

  • University of Missouri Study - “Rock Island Trail Opportunity Analysis Infrastructure that Strengthens Communities” finds that the Rock Island Trail would have similar impact as the Katy Trail:

    • 400,000 visitors annually

    • $18.5 million economic impact

    • 367 jobs

    • $8.2 million in payroll

    • Average visitor spends $45 per person

    • Families/groups overnight spend $700 per trip

What are the benefits?

  • Missouri's rail-trails are well-loved: The Katy Trail State Park is Missouri's most popular state park. 

  • Communities along the Katy Trail State Park have experience a resurgence. Businesses have been energized and new businesses launched.

  • More than 8,500 Missourians have expressed support for this project. 

  • Trails are mentioned more frequently than any other outdoor recreation facility in the Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP). One of the three most supported goals for the State is to "support trails and walkable communities."

  • A developed trail will offer safe trail routes to area schools. This not only represents a benefit to the community, but it opens up opportunities for federal grants. 

  • Communities become connected and history becomes alive.

  • Opportunities for walking, running, cycling, horseback riding -- all wheelchair and stroller  accessible. 

  • Increased property values for nearby homes and new businesses springing up along the trail.

As the trail goes, the list of benefits grow.

Where the funds will go:

Capital                                                                              $2,073,000
Fencing                                                                                           $760,000
Closure of crossing and bridges                                                    $202,000
Signage                                                                                              $51,000
Contracted Labor                                                                            $600,000
Security and equipment                                                                $350,000
Ranger vehicles and equipment                                                    $110,000
Programs/Operating (10 years)                                     $4,730,000
Rangers ($125,000 annual)                                                           $1,250,000
Park Maintenance staff ($137,000 annual)                                 $1,370,000
Maintenance Cost ($211,000 annual)                                          $2,110,000

Contingency                                                                     $2,000,000
Insurance/Liability for bridges and tunnels            $1,000,000
Funds to accept Missouri Central Railroad’s  gift  $9,803,000
Initial Trail Development                                             $10,000,000

TOTAL                                                                               $19,803,000

Beyond the gate lies 144 miles of potential trail, open to all for exploration and enjoyment. But it's up to all of us to make it happen.