$600K Awarded to Vermont Towns for Outdoor Recreation Projects

MONTPELIER—The Vermont Department of Forests, Parks and Recreation announced today that $600,000 is being awarded to Vermont municipalities for public outdoor recreation projects. The outdoor recreation grants are funded by the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), a program of the National Park Service.

LWCF funds are made available to municipalities around the state to conserve lands and develop infrastructure dedicated to outdoor recreation. Since 1964, the LWCF program has granted more than $48 million in projects and provided 27,000 acres of land for outdoor recreation in Vermont.

“The impact of this program in Vermont has been huge,” says Jessica Savage, Recreation Program Manager and LWCF Grant Administrator. “Hundreds of parks and facilities have been acquired and improved with LWCF funds over the past fifty-two years, likely in your community or in a neighboring community. This grant round adds even more excellent projects to that list.”

Three projects have been awarded funds in this 2017 grant round:

  • The town of Lincoln will be improving the Potato Hill Park Playground at the Lincoln Community School to include more diverse and accessible natural playground elements. The school will be awarded $100,000 towards the estimated $230,000 project.
  • The Mad River Recreation District will be purchasing play fields in Waitsfield at the Mad River Park. The 10 acres were at risk of being developed, and will be purchased by the Recreation District for continued use as community recreation fields. The District will receive $225,000 towards the purchase price of $550,000. The appraised fair market value of the fields is $725,000.
  • The City of Burlington will be purchasing 12 acres of land on North Avenue, adjacent to the bike path and waterfront. The city will receive $275,000 towards a total project cost of $2 million.

The National Park Service LWCF grant program provides “50-50” reimbursement-based grants. Cities, towns, villages, school districts, fire districts and inter-municipal districts are eligible applicants. Projects can range from land acquisitions to make land available for public recreation, to development work including the creation of sport playfields, hiking, biking and walking trails, camping, picnic facilities, swimming areas, and playground areas.

For more information about the program and a list of past LWCF projects, please visit http://fpr.vermont.gov/recreation/grants/lwcf or contact Jessica Savage at Jessica.savage@vermont.gov or 802-249-1230.

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