Boyne Valley trail awaits OK on grants

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Beth Gohs

Staff Writer

As Boyne slowly becomes a trail-town community, another trailway is planned to begin construction in the spring of 2016, and set to be broken into three phases.

The Boyne Valley Trailway will run from Boyne Falls to Boyne City; and, currently the trail board is still pending grant application results.

“Phase I, we are waiting on acceptance of our grant application,” said Bill Aten, trustee of the Charlevoix County Community Foundation. “We have grant applications into MDOT and into the natural sources trust fund. If we get approval of both of those grant applications and funding is available, which is questionable, then the earliest the construction will begin is next spring. We should know whether the grants are accepted in December.”

The trailway is part of the Trail Towns, but separate from the Boyne City-Charlevoix Road trail project.

The trail is meant for non-motorized vehicles and will be 10 feet wide with asphalt surface.

“I think (the community) is very supportive. It all goes back to the connectivity to being a Trail Town,” said Tom Neidhamer, Boyne City Planning Commission chair…. “I think it’s just going to be a huge recreational asset because a family could go on that trail so easy because it’s so level, and there’s no safety factor because you’re in the woods.”

The project is split between three phases.

• Phase I is planned to be 2.6 miles from Dam Road to Boyne Mountain, expected to begin next spring.

• Phase II will extend from East of Main Street in Boyne City and ends at the trail head at Dam Road.

• Phase III is from Boyne Falls School into the village of Boyne Falls ending on an existing trail head, south of M-75 on Nelson Avenue.

“Each phase is right around $750,000 but it’s unclear at the moment,” said Aten. “We think we could get upward of $450,000 of that from grants. The township (Boyne Valley) will fund, I think, $35,000 for the first phase.”

The township is applying for grants from the federal transportation fund, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources Trust Fund and the National Safe Routes to School fund.

These grants could cover up to 94 percent of costs, with the rest of the money coming from private foundations and citizens.