Submitted by Larry Leveen.
Pierce County’s ForeverGreen Trails is seeking public input on the Yelm Prairie Line Trail (YPLT), a non-motorized pathway that will connect the cities of Yelm and Roy. The 5-mile project will provide a non-motorized connection across the Nisqually River and connect Thurston and Pierce Counties.
ForeverGreen, in cooperation with the Cities of Yelm and Roy and Thurston and Pierce Counties, is engaged in a conceptual study of the trail. The goal of this study is to gather information about the project requirements, stakeholders, and public opinion about the YPLT for use by the entities that will build the trail as well as agencies that provide grants for such facilities.
Part of the public outreach for the study involves a questionnaire to gauge public interest in the trail, likely use habits, and preferences for aspects of the trail’s design. “The facility should serve the public, and we want to understand what trail features they want it to have,” according to Larry Leveen, ForeverGreen’s new Executive Director. “Rather than assume we know what is best, we thought we should ask them, so we created an online questionnaire — a non-scientific survey — and published it at tinyurl.com/YelmTrail. We also share project information, updates, and a link to the survey via our website as well as the Yelm Prairie Line Trail Facebook Page.”
Leveen added that although this one project is small, it is particularly important because of the regional connection it will create between the two counties. “Ultimately, this will help create a Cross-State Trail by linking the Palouse to Cascades Trail and the Willapa Hills Trail, enabling people to travel from Idaho all the way to the Pacific Ocean via trails. It will make for a signature facility that will greatly benefit rural communities throughout Washington.”
ForeverGreen anticipates that the Yelm Prairie Line Trail will be completed by 2026, although the larger Cross-State Trail will take substantially longer than that. For now, they are asking the public to provide input via their questionnaire for inclusion in their study. The deadline for the survey is November 14th.
ForeverGreen Trails is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization based in Tacoma, WA and is the leading voice for trails in Pierce County. Created in 2000 by a group of community stakeholders, ForeverGreen serves residents across the county through advocacy, education, policy-making, and facilitating the overall implementation of a regional-wide trails network. Its work is supported by individual donations and sponsorships from several businesses, organizations, and local governments. For more information, contact ForeverGreen Trails via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.forevergreentrails.org/.