OIL CITY, Venango County, Pa., Oct. 25, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Secretary Richard Allan today joined local officials celebrating the groundbreaking for a 1.8-mile stretch of the McClintock Trail near Oil City.
DCNR invested $205,000 in this south segment of the trail through its Community Conservation Partnerships Program.
"Trails are all about connections and, in the case of this new section, it will help join Oil Creek State Park with Oil City and is vital to closing the central gap of a regional trail network that will run from Erie to Pittsburgh," Allan said. "In recent survey data, trails ranked as the number one recreational interest among Pennsylvanians right now, and people want them close to home."
The DCNR grant to the Oil Region Alliance of Business, Industry and Tourism was funded through the Environmental Stewardship Fund generated from landfill and natural gas impact fees.
The southern segment of the McClintock Trail will run from McClintock Well #1 in Cornplanter Township, paralleling the railroad tracks, and ending at Oil City.
Work will include an eight-foot paved trail surface. Interpretive panels will eventually be installed along the trail. Construction of the trail is anticipated to be completed in late summer 2013.
The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation provided $1.2 million in Transportation Enhancement funds for the southern trail segment. Other partners include: Oil City, Cornplanter Township, National Park Service, OMG Americas, and the Western New York & Pennsylvania Railroad.
Allan was joined at the groundbreaking event today by members of the Oil Region Alliance, which is overseeing the project, as well as Sen. Mary Jo White (R-Erie) and Rep. Scott Hutchinson (R-Venango).
"Construction of this segment gives encouragement that sound partnerships and thoughtful engineering will accelerate development along the Erie-to-Pittsburgh Trail corridor," John Phillips, ORA's president said.
The Oil Region Alliance also is currently putting the finishing touches on the first phase of the McClintock Trail that is a "share the road" course with improved parking areas and trailheads. That segment connects Oil Creek State Park to McClintock Well # 1 operated by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. DCNR invested $200,000 in the first phase of the trail project.
A regional trail study in 2007 found that existing trails in the area attract more than 160,000 users and generate more than $4.3 million in revenues to the region annually.
For more information about DCNR's grant program, visit www.dcnr.state.pa.us and choose "Recreation & Conservation" under "Quick Links."
Media contact: Christina Novak, 717-772-9101
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources