Gov. Eric Holcomb announced the first round of his trails grant program Thursday.
The money for the trails grant program comes from the Holcomb administration’s renegotiation of the state’s Toll Road lease last year. The first round of awards – $25 million worth – is split between regional and local projects around the state.
Holcomb says the investment is important to both improve Hoosiers’ health and boost economic development.
“And you start to see people populating different areas and restaurants popping up and more interest in not just the economic development but just the collaboration of communities,” Holcomb says.
Many of the projects extend or close gaps in existing trail systems, several of which follow the routes of old railroads. The single largest award in the first round goes to the B & O Trail in Speedway, Indiana.
One of the projects will renovate the Monon High Bridge in Delphi, Indiana, for trail use. That bridge was the scene of the 2017 murder of two Delphi girls, Abby Williams and Libby German.
There’s $65 million left in the governor’s trails grant program. The next round of applications will open later this year.