2009 RTP Achievement Awards

Award-Winning Trail and Greenway Projects

 

The members of the Coalition for Recreational Trails have selected the winners of the "Annual Achievement Awards" in recognition of outstanding use of Recreational Trails Program (RTP) funds.

The award winners were recognized at a special ceremony in Washington, D.C. on June 10, 2009 at the U.S. House of Representatives Rayburn House Office Building.

 

 

Sam Houston Multiple-Use Trail (Texas)

Construction and Design Award

photo of men and machines

Drainage work on the Sam Houston Multiple-Use Trail

 

The Sam Houston Multiple-Use Trail (SHMUT) boasts the only designated OHV trail system located on U.S. Forest Service (USFS) lands in Texas. After decades of use, combined with ineffective maintenance and some poorly located or constructed trails, this trail system needed major restoration.

In 2006 and 2007, the USFS was granted RTP funds by the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) to renovate this trail system. Total funding from these two RTP grants was $770,000.

The USFS worked to create a coalition of parties interested in improving and maintaining the SHMUT, consisting of USFS staff, Trail Riders of Houston (TRH), TPWD, and the USFS Trails Unlimited (TU) Enterprise Team, who served as project managers.

During this extensive restoration project, TU introduced a unique trail innovation: the use of pre-engineered fiberglass reinforced polymer bridges to replace the more traditional wooden bridges. To date, three fiberglass bridges have been assembled and installed on the SHMUT. TU also introduced the use of corrugated "arched culverts," made from recycled high-density polyethylene, to replace conventional round corrugated metal culverts and hardened stream crossings. Each of the innovations will ultimately lead to a more sustainable trail system.

Throughout this process, TU has taught basic and advanced classes on trail design, layout and planning, as well as a SWECO trail dozer certification class. TRH members will use this training and experience to help USFS staff maintain the SHMUT.

Contact: TPWD -- Steve Thompson, 4200 Smith School Road, Austin, TX 78744, Phone: 512-389-8230; USFS -- Catherine Albers, 415 South First Street, Suite 110, Lufkin, TX 75901, Phone: 936-639-8557

 

photo of wood bridge

buiilding the bridge on U.S. Forest Service lands in Texas

Photo of small bridge

Armoring a drainage crossing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


The Recreational Trails Program

The Recreational Trails Program (RTP) is an assistance program of the Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). See the FHWA website for more information. Federal transportation funds benefit recreation by making funds available to the States to develop and maintain recreational trails and trail-related facilities for both nonmotorized and motorized recreational trail uses. The RTP funds come from the Federal Highway Trust Fund, and represent a portion of the motor fuel excise tax collected from nonhighway recreational fuel use: fuel used for off-highway recreation by snowmobiles, all-terrain vehicles, off-highway motorcycles, and off-highway light trucks.

The Recreational Trails Program was first created in 1991 as part of the ground-breaking legislation known as ISTEA, and was expanded and reauthorized through the 2005 "Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users'' (SAFETEA-LU). A series of extensions has continued the surface transportation funding authority.

 

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