filed under: economics of trails


Assessing the Economic and Livability Value of Multi-Use Trails

A Case Study into the Tammany Trace Rail Trail in St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana

Multi-use trails are becoming an economic catalyst and vital contributor to the quality of life for communities all across the nation. This document looks at key factors as to why this is, and takes these factors as a basis into a case study on the Tammany Trace (the ‘Trace’), a 31- mile rail-to-trail conversion in St. Tammany Parish, Louisiana.


Tammany Trace Study 7 15 15


by Hagen Thames Hammons

Multi-use trails are mostly seen for their recreational benefit, but these lessons learned begin to formulate features of how to improve trails to make them more economically viable and embraced by visitors and the communities they serve. These features focus on improving the economic, connectivity, livability and community identity aspects of trails to further improve an already valuable community resource. When communities embrace and expand on these potential improvements, then the far-reaching benefits of their trail facility will most certainly be expanded.

Published May 29, 2015

More Articles in this Category

San Jose Trails by the Numbers

San Jose is developing a 100 mile trail network! View the handout!

Promoting Parks and Recreation’s Role in Economic Development

This study builds on previous NRPA research on the economic importance of local park and recreation agencies by exploring the role that quality park amenities play in 21st century regional economic development.

The Economic Benefits of Mountain Biking at One of Its Meccas: An Application of the Travel Cost Method to Mountain Biking in Moab, Utah

This 1997 paper estimates the value of a relatively new form of recreation: mountain biking. Its popularity has resulted in many documented conflicts, and its value must be estimated so an informed decision regarding trail allocation can be made. A travel cost model (TCM) is used to estimate the economic benefits, measured by consumer surplus, to the users of mountain bike trails near Moab, Utah.

Adapting to the New Economy: The Impacts of Mountain Bike Tourism in Oakridge, Oregon

Oakridge provides but one example of a rural community experiencing economic and social decline.