FAYETTE COUNTY (WOAY) – A new soft surface trail plan is the next path in creating a future of new opportunities in Fayette County.
The Fayette County Trail Coalition, along with several other organizations throughout the community and around the region, are helping to bring the plan into fruition.
Being developed by a professional design firm, the plan will bring over 30 additional miles of soft, non-paved surface trails to four different locations around the county.
“We’ve just seen a ton of increased efforts and interest in recreational infrastructure, and with the Arrowhead Trail and the Wolf Creek Trail, as well as just the skate park in the town of Fayetteville, there have been more people enjoying the outdoors,” says Abbie Newell, a member of the Fayette Trail Coalition.
The four locations chosen for the trail include Fayette County Park in Beckwith, Wolf Creek Park in Fayetteville, the Town of Fayetteville, and Needle’s Eye Park in Oak Hill.
Fayetteville and Oak Hill see the new trail plan as just another way to show visitors from the national park to also take a look at the surrounding communities the area has to offer.
“I think it’s a project encouraged by the national park to connect communities to the adjacent national park, and it’s a way to get visitors into our municipalities,” says City Manager of Oak Hill, Bill Hannabass.
Along with creating more recreational opportunities, the new trail plan will also help to preserve the older trails in the area that already see a lot of use.
“It will help with the over-crowding and over-use issue seen on some of our popular trails like Longpoint or Endless Wall, so hopefully parking lots won’t be as busy, there will be less trail erosion,” Newell says.
WVU’s Brad and Alys Smith Outdoor Economic Development Collaborative, Plateau Action Network, the Fayette County Commission, and New River Bikes are some of the other groups helping to set this new trail plan into motion.
Plans to start major construction on the trails are expected by early 2023.
Public meetings on the trail plan will be held Thursday, Jan. 20 at 5:30 p.m. at Fayetteville Town Hall, and Monday, Jan. 24 at 6 p.m. at Oak Hill City Hall.