Coalition for Recreational Trails



Award-Winning Projects funded by the Recreational Trails Program of the Federal Highway Administration



The Annual Achievement Awards are part of the ongoing effort to build awareness and appreciation of the highly successful Recreational Trails Program (RTP). Outstanding projects funded by RTP are honored at the awards ceremony on Capitol Hill in June during the annual celebration of Great Outdoors Month. Members of Congress will be encouraged to join us in honoring the achievements of their constituents at the event hosted by the Coalition for Recreational Trails.

As an additional benefit, American Trails makes a web page for each winning project. See the 2013 Awards and see the 96 award pages we have created since 2003. We hope you will join us in this important effort to recognize the significant contributions to our nationwide system of trails and greenways that the Recreational Trails Program is supporting all across the country.

Awards are given in several categories:

  • Maintenance & Rehabilitation – maintaining, repairing damage to, or upgrading the quality of a trail
  • Construction & Design – planning and building a trail, portions of a trail (e.g., a bridge), or trail related facilities (e.g., a trailhead, shelter, etc.)
  • Education & Communication – enhancing trail use and enjoyment through increased environmental awareness, promotion of trail-related safety, and encouragement of trail-related outdoor recreation
  • Multiple-Use Management & Corridor Sharing – facilitating and/or encouraging the use of a trail corridor by more than one type of trail enthusiast, particularly those enthusiasts that do not ordinarily share trails or trail-related facilities
  • Environment & Wildlife Compatibility – enhancing the protection of wildlife and/or the general environment as part of trail development and use
  • Accessibility Enhancement – facilitating and/or encouraging increased access to trail-related
    recreation opportunities for people with disabilities
  • Youth Conservation/Service Corps – making effective use of the services and skills of qualified
    youth conservation or service corps to construct and/or maintain trails

Urban Trail

Awards are presented every year for
outstanding representative RTP projects.




Nomination materials are available around the first of each year. Then in the spring, award winners will be selected from projects nominated by public agencies, trail administrators or other project sponsors.  Projects must be completed in order to receive an award. See State by State listing of all RTP Awards.

You can check the online Recreational Trails Program Database to find projects and to be sure your project included RTP funding. Please note: Data collection is an ongoing effort and data is regularly being entered into the database as it is received from the States, District of Columbia, and other sources. Should you need assistance with the RTP Database, please contact

We invite you to nominate an outstanding project and to encourage the sponsor(s) of an excellent project in your state to submit a nomination as well.  We are also again encouraging those making nominations to solicit support from their Members of Congress— both U.S. Representatives and U.S. Senators— to build awareness of excellent RTP-funded projects and the RTP program itself.  


The Recreational Trails Program

The Recreational Trails Program (RTP) is an assistance program of the Department of Transportation's Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). 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.

To date over 18,000 projects have been funded, creating and enhancing recreational trails for millions of trail enthusiasts across the country. See the online Recreational Trails Program Database to find projects.

American Trails and organizations across the country are working together to build awareness and understanding of the RTP, to support its effective implementation and to help ensure that it receives adequate funding. For more information on the Recreational Trails Program, and projects funded in all 50 states, see



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