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Sports Backers Helps Secure $7.5 Million from the Virginia General Assembly for the Fall Line Trail

Funding marks first Richmond-area trail to receive funds from the State Trails Office

 

RICHMOND – Sports Backers is excited to announce the 2024 Virginia General Assembly dedicated $7,500,000 to the Fall Line trail in its final budget, signed by Governor Glen Youngkin this month. The Fall Line is a 43-mile paved trail planned between Ashland and Petersburg through the seven localities of the Town of Ashland, Hanover County, Henrico County, the City of Richmond, Chesterfield County, the City of Colonial Heights, and the City of Petersburg.

The new funds were appropriated from undesignated resources from the newly created State Trails Office housed within Virginia Department of Transportation. This is the first Richmond-area trail to receive financial assistance from this fund, which was established in former Governor Ralph Northam’s final proposed budget and approved by the 2022 Virginia General Assembly.

Sports Backers has led the advocacy efforts to support the creation and development of the Fall Line since 2017. The active living nonprofit also supported the creation of the Central Virginia Transportation Authority in 2020 and VDOT State Trails Office in 2022.

The planning and construction of the Fall Line is being administered in partnership between Virginia Department of Transportation, the Central Virginia Transportation Authority, and Tri Cities Metropolitan Planning Organization.

“The Central Virginia Transportation Authority is thrilled to see additional funding committed to the completion of this critical transportation corridor that will increase economic development and improve quality of life in Central Virginia,” said Chet Parsons, Executive Director for the CVTA.  “We welcome the support of the State Trails Fund and continue our efforts to see this 43-mile corridor fully funded in the near future.”

Support and enthusiasm from Virginia lawmakers has been integral to the entire Fall Line project, including securing the most recent funds.

“The Fall Line trail is an exciting project that promises to transform people’s access to active living across Central Virginia and right through Chesterfield County,” said Delegate Carrie Coyner of Chesterfield. “I am thrilled we found a way to tap the State Trails Fund to support it this session.”

“I can’t wait for the Fall Line trail to connect our Central Virginia communities from Ashland to Petersburg,” said Senator Schuyler VanValkenburg. “Two years ago, with the help of Sports Backers, we dedicated funding to the State Trails Office for this kind of investment in our local economies and quality of life. I am pleased the General Assembly was able to allocate a portion of that fund to this transformational trail project in the Commonwealth that will be a game changer for Henrico County.”

Construction of the Fall Line began last year. Henrico County broke ground in Lakeside in October 2023 on a half-mile section near the Richmond City line and Bryan Park. Last month, VDOT’s administered 5-mile northern section that will bridge Ashland, Hanover County, and crossing the Chickahominy River into Henrico County celebrated a groundbreaking along the Ashland Trolley Line. This segment is expected to be completed in 2025. The next anticipated groundbreaking will be in Richmond’s Bryan Park, expected Summer 2024.

The entire Fall Line trail is expected to be completed by 2030. For more information visit falllineva.org, view the Fall Line Vision Plan or reach out to Brantley Tyndall, Director of Bike Walk RVA at [email protected].

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About Sports Backers
With a key message of Let’s Go, RVA, the mission of Sports Backers is to inspire people to live actively. A nonprofit organization, Sports Backers is dedicated to producing nationally recognized quality sporting events and programs that motivate residents and visitors alike to be more active, supporting youth running and fitness programs, and advocating for safe and connected networks of bike and pedestrian infrastructure. Learn more at sportsbackers.org.

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