B&O Trail Association Breaks Ground on New Trail Section

(Brownsburg, Indiana – November 9, 2022) The B&O Trail Association held a ceremonial groundbreaking today for its newest trail section, which runs from County Road 500 East to County Road 250 East in Hendricks County. “This is an exciting day for BOTA as construction is now beginning on the next phase of the B&O Trail,” said Jeff Smallwood, BOTA president. “We are one step closer to our long-term vision of a trail stretching from downtown Indianapolis to Montezuma, Indiana.”

In Hendricks County, the B&O Trail currently runs 6.25 miles west from Raceway Road to County Road 500 East. There is also a 1.5-mile section in the Town of Speedway, and the newest section, which runs east from Speedway to Michigan Street and west from Speedway to Eagle Creek, is nearing completion under the direction of the Speedway Trails Association.

Beaty Construction of Boggstown, Indiana, was awarded the current project, dubbed 5B, which will cost approximately $1.7 million. It includes a nine-foot-wide asphalt pedestrian and cycling trail, an equestrian trail, and four road crossings. BOTA’s consultants include CrossRoad Engineers and Storrow Kinsella Associates of Indianapolis. Future sections are Phase 5A, which will run west from just east of County Road 100 East to approximately County Road 50 West, and Phase 6, which will run east from Raceway Road to connect with the trail being constructed by the STA. New trailhead parking lots will also be constructed near Maplewood and Tilden in Hendricks County. Substantial completion of Phase 5B is scheduled for June of 2023.

The project is primarily funded by a $4,583,050 Next Level Trail grant awarded to BOTA by the Indiana Department of Natural Resources in March of 2021, along with nearly $500,000 in matching funds raised by BOTA. STA also received a $4,893,479 NLT grant in 2019 to fund their construction efforts.

“We sincerely appreciate the support this project has received from the State of Indiana, Hendricks County, Marion County and our many, many donors, both corporate and individual,” Smallwood added. “Although construction costs have escalated sharply since we were awarded our grant, we are working tirelessly to raise the funds needed to build the trail as originally planned.”

About the B&O Trail Association: With a mission of Blazing Trails, Connecting Communities, the B&O Trail Association (BOTA) is creating a recreational trail along the abandoned B&O Railroad corridor. The non-profit, all-volunteer organization was formed in 1993 and has already completed 6.25 miles of paved trail. To learn more, visit botrail.org. BOTA partners with the Speedway Trails Association (STA), which is constructing along the B&O corridor in Marion County from Michigan Street to western Marion County, where the two groups will meet approximately halfway between I-465 and Girls School Road. STA has completed 1.5 miles of trail in Speedway and is nearing completion of the section from Michigan Street to Eagle Creek, including the construction of a bridge over that span.

B&O Trail Next Level Trail (NLT) Grant Facts

The Indiana Department of Natural Resources administers the Next Level Trails Program, which will invest $150 million – the largest infusion of State trail funding in Indiana history – toward the development of regionally and locally significant trails throughout Indiana. As part of Governor Holcomb’s broader Next Level Connectionsinfrastructure program, Next Level Trails is designed to incentivize collaborative efforts to accelerate trail connections. Three rounds of grants have been awarded so far.

• Speedway Trails Association Round 1 grant award was $4,893,479 in 2019. STA’s project comprises two phases in the B&O Railroad corridor in Marion County.
• BOTA’s 2021 NLT Round 2 grant award was $4,583,050. BOTA plans three phases of construction including 5A & 5B in Hendricks County and 6 in Marion County
• BOTA & STA projects are to connect between Girls School Road and I-465.

About Brian Scott

I play on the radio from 7 am -1 pm weekdays on 98.9 FM WYRZ and WYRZ.org. Follow me on twitter @WYRZBrianScott or e-mail me at brian@wyrz.org.

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