Trails in Private Developments

Emerging Trends and Model Communities

Hear a developer’s perspective on establishing a successful private development trails system for transportation and recreation purposes.

by Jim Wood, Chief, Florida Office of Greenways and Trails, Todd Pokrywa, Vice President of Planning, Schroeder-Manatee Ranch, Inc.


It is a goal of American Trails that a quality trails system be accessible within 15 minutes of every American household and workplace. Private developers play a critical role in facilitating access to trails from homes, particularly given that trails are the number one community amenity that prospective homeowners seek (National Association of Homebuilders). This session, which features a recipient of the 2008 American Trails Developer Award, will include a look at trends in trails and private development planning. Hear a developer’s perspective on establishing a successful private development trails system for transportation and recreation purposes.

About the Authors

Jim Wood has been on the Executive Board of the American Trails Board of Directors since 2004, after he served as Program Chair for the National Trails Symposium with American Trails in Orlando, FL. Jim has been with the Florida Department of Environmental Protection’s Office of Greenways and Trails since 1999, and became Chief of the program when it recently joined the Florida State Parks division. Specific projects he has been involved in include the creation of the visitor-oriented online FL Greenways and Trails Guide, coordination of two regional developer forums on trails and greenways, the FL Trails Database, the American Trails Developer Award, and the VISIT FLORIDA Trails-Tourism Website. His interests focus on the integration of trails in tourism and private development planning. He holds a BS in Communication from the University of Florida and an MS in Geography from Florida State University.

Todd Pokrywa is SMR’s primary liaison with government officials and departments relative to the development of the master planned community of Lakewood Ranch in Southwest Florida. He interacts frequently with local, state and federal agencies on a variety of land use issues. He earned a degree in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Waterloo in Canada. In 2004 he received the Gulf Coast Business Review’s “40 Under 40” Award. He serves on numerous boards for nonprofit organizations and is a graduate of both Leadership Manatee and Leadership Sarasota.

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