Richardson to pursue grant for unfunded segment of Cotton Belt hike and bike trail

A rendering shows what the Cotton Belt bridge over US 75 in Richardson could look like once the rail is operational in 2022.

A rendering shows what the Cotton Belt bridge over US 75 in Richardson could look like once the rail is operational in 2022.

Richardson is offering to pony up a maximum of $200,000 for the sole unfunded segment of its Cotton Belt-adjacent hike and bike trail. 

Three-and-a-half miles of the 26-mile trail will run through Richardson. Three of the city's four trail segments are fully funded, except for Segment 21, a half-mile stretch connecting Waterview Parkway with the future Cotton Belt station at The University of Texas at Dallas. That segment is expected to cost about $600,000.

Jessica Shutt, the city's mobility and special projects manager, recommended during a Feb. 18 presentation that the city pursue a grant available through the North Central Texas Council of Governments' Regional Transportation Council. The Transportations Alternatives Set-Aside Program provides funds for projects that construct pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly infrastructure, according to Shutt.

A resolution approved on consent Feb. 25 set in stone the city's commitment to a 33 percent contribution, or no more than $200,000. Grant recipients are expected to be announced June 13.

If chosen, the city would partner with Dallas Area Rapid Transit and the NCTCOG on the design and construction of the trail, which will begin within the next three years, according to the resolution.
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