Monday, October 3, 2022

Dock project receives Virginia Recreational Trails Program grant funding!

The Four Mile Run Conservatory Foundation is receiving a grant award of $300,000 toward a project to build a public, accessible floating launch for kayaks, canoes, and other non-motorized recreational watercraft on the tidal portion of Four Mile Run, a Potomac River tributary. The project is one of seven selected for funding by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation through its Recreational Trails Program (RTP) in 2022.

The project would be the first Washington, DC metro area launch to the Potomac River meeting Americans with Disabilities Act standards, and it will include a transfer platform suitable for wheelchair users. The launch will also feature a roller-entry ramp, providing increased safety for unassisted or novice paddlers when launching or landing. From the new launch point on Four Mile Run in Alexandria, paddlers will be able to access the Potomac River Water Trail and areas of the Run where restoration work has enhanced wildlife habitat and ecological function.

“Access to nature, especially on waterways close to home, greatly enhances health and well-being, and seeing how demand for water recreation continues to rise, we are thrilled to be receiving this support for a public-access project we’ve worked toward for several years,” said Four Mile Run Conservatory Foundation president Kurt Moser. “We still have a way to go in our fundraising, but this is a huge leap forward.”

With already-committed matching funding of $25,000 from an anonymous donor, project funding is well past the halfway mark toward the overall cost, estimated at roughly a half million dollars. The cost of the engineering design, completed in February this year, was supported by community contributions and matching grant funding of $17,600 awarded in 2020 by the Alexandria Department of Recreation, Parks, and Cultural Activities (RPCA). The project is currently under consideration for additional RPCA matching grant funding of $50,000, with Alexandria’s Park and Recreation Commission to select grant proposals for funding at their upcoming public meeting on October 20.

Donations in support of the project are welcome at ​​

The RTP is a federal, matching reimbursement program established to construct and rehabilitate recreational trails and trail-related facilities. The Federal Highway Administration allocates funds to each state and provides oversight to state agencies that administer the program. The Department of Conservation and Recreation administers the program in Virginia. Counties, cities and towns, park and recreation authorities, tribal governments, state agencies, federal agencies and nonprofit organizations are eligible to compete for funding.