Newtown receives state grants for Al's Trail Greenway Feasibility Study and access to local trails

Town of Newtown receives state grants totaling $124,080 for Al's Trail Greenway Feasibility Study and Newtown Bridle Lands Association Trail Improvements

Governor Ned Lamont and Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Katie Dykes today announced that approximately $9 million in state grants are being released through the Connecticut Recreational Trails Program to plan, build, expand, and improve a total of 50 multi-use trails across Connecticut.

The program is administered by the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP). Funding for this grant round was allocated by the State Bond Commission in July 2022. Governor Lamont serves as chairman of the commission.

“I am thrilled to announce funding for these 50 projects, which will improve and expand recreational trail opportunities around Connecticut,” Governor Lamont said. “The incredible response to this grant round shows the high demand for outdoor recreation in our state. Our residents and visitors continue to explore state parks, forests, and municipal open spaces and land trust preserves at record levels.”

DEEP has seen demand for outdoor recreation increase dramatically since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020. Annual visits to locations in the Connecticut State Parks and Forests system reached an estimated 17 million in 2022 – a 75% increase from pre-pandemic visitation levels of between 9 and 10 million in 2019. Additionally, the economic value of hiking, climbing, and tent camping increased by 50% from 2019 to 2021. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the value of outdoor recreation in 2021 contributed nearly $4 billion to the state and supported more than 40,000 jobs.

A total of 28 of the awarded projects are within or serve Connecticut’s distressed municipalities and environmental justice communities, improving equitable access to outdoor recreation. Many of the awarded projects are bicycle paths that can support both commuting and recreation, including Naugatuck Greenway Projects in Naugatuck, Ansonia, Thomaston, Waterbury, and the Greenwich-Stamford multi-use path, among others. The grant money can be allocated for a wide variety of purposes, including planning, design, land acquisition, construction, construction administration, and publications for bikeways, walkways, and greenways, as well as for equipment and trail amenities, such as parking lots, toilet buildings, signs, and benches.

The Connecticut Greenways Council assisted DEEP with the competitive grant selection process. Funding for program administration of 5%, pursuant to state statutes, is also included in the grants. DEEP anticipates most of the awarded projects being completed by 2026.

*Image courtesy The Newtown Bridle Lands Association

The following is a list of projects receiving grants under this round:

Connecticut Recreational Trails Program
May 2023 Grant Round


Project Title

Project Type

Grant Funding

Borough of Naugatuck

Naugatuck River Greenway Trail - Phase II



Branford Land Trust

Branford Land Trust Handicap Accessible Braille and Sensory Trail



City of Bristol

Bristol Recreational Trails Grant Planning



City of Hartford

Keney Park Trail Connectivity

Planning/Design, Outreach, Education


City of Meriden

Brookside Park to Giuffrida Park Multi-Use Trail



City of Shelton

Shelton Housatonic Riverwalk



City of Torrington

Red Mountain Trail Design and Construction - Torrington, CT

Planning/Design, Construction, Amenities


City of Waterbury

Waterbury Naugatuck River Greenway Trail Mad River Spur Design

Planning/Design, Outreach


City of West Haven

Hubbard Park Interpretive Trail

Planning/Design, Construction


City of West Haven

Plainfield Community Trailway Project

Planning/Design, Construction


Connecticut Forest and Park Association

CT Forest and Park Association Public Engagement and Stewardship

Planning/Design, Construction, Maintenance, Education, Equipment, Outreach


Connecticut Resource Conservation and Development

12 Town Airline State Park Trail Regional Association Formation & Marketing

Planning/Design, Amenities, Publications, Outreach


Friends of the Litchfield Community Greenways, Inc.

Litchfield Greenway - Phase 4 - Bantam Connection

Planning/Design, Construction, Amenities


Goodwin University

Goodwin University Trails Expansion – Phase VI

Planning/Design Construction, Maintenance


Hop River Trail Alliance (Town of Coventry Fiduciary)

Hop River State Park Trail Signage and Wayfinding

Amenities, Publications, Outreach


Newtown Bridle Lands Association Inc.

Improving Multi Use Access to Newtown Trails

Planning/Design, Construction, Maintenance, Amenities


Parks & Point with DEEP Outreach & Education

Words from the Trails: Poetry and Nonfiction Inspired by Connecticut’s Recreational Trails

Education, Publication


Riverfront Recapture, Inc.

Hartford and East Hartford Riverwalk Trail Counting Initiative

Equipment, Amenities


Shoreline Greenway Trail

Shoreline Greenway Trail Extension in Hammonasset State Park



Town of Ansonia

Naugatuck River Greenway (Ansonia Riverwalk)



Town of Canton

Extension of Farmington River Rail Trail, East, Additional Design Funds



Town of East Haddam

Lower Connecticut River Valley Heritage Trail/ Bike Path - East Haddam

Planning/Design, Outreach


Town of East Hampton

Air Line Trail Gap Phase 4

Planning/Design, Construction


Town of Greenwich (Stamford as Partner)

Greenwich-Stamford Multi-Use Path



Town of Manchester

Hop River Trail Extension to Cheney Trail



Town of New Hartford

New Hartford Multi-Use Trail Phase 1

Planning/Design, Construction


Town of Newington

Newington Greenway Expansion



Town of Newtown

Al's Trail Greenway Feasibility Study



Town of Norfolk - Rails to Trails

Proposed North Brook Trail Section

Planning/Design, Construction


Town of Old Lyme

Multi-purpose Trail and Bridge at Lieutenant River



Town of Oxford

Rockhouse Adaptive Trail Network

Planning/Design, Construction, Equipment, Amenities


Town of Plainfield

Kate Downing Rd Open Space



Town of Preston

Poquetonuck Cove and Village Heritage Trail

Planning/Design, Construction


Town of Putnam

Air Line Trail Connection and Improvements Project

Planning/Design, Construction, Maintenance, Publications, Outreach


Town of Thomaston

Naugatuck River Greenway



Town of Thompson

Thompson, CT - STILL More Than Just a Train Wreck

Construction, Amenities


Town of Watertown

Naugatuck River Greenway - Frost Bridge Rd. to Branch Brook, Watertown



Town of Wethersfield

Heritage Way Trail Improvements at Cove Park



Town of Wilton

Norwalk River Valley Trail – WII Walk Extension



Town of Winchester

Mad River Recreation Area Phase 1



Town of Wolcott

Scovill (Mill Pond Way) Trail Improvements

Planning/Design, Construction, Maintenance, Equipment, Amenities


Trust for Public Land

Mono Pond State Park Master Plan



University of Connecticut

UConn Connecticut Trails Program

Education, Outreach


Wyndham Land Trust

Parking for Bull Hill Preserve

Planning/Design, Construction, Outreach


Mooween State Park

Mooween Trail Parking Lot



Harkness Memorial State Park

Harkness Boardwalk Renovation



George Waldo State Park

Improve Access to Housatonic River



Bennett's Pond State Park

Green Trail Restoration



Kettletown State Park

Boardwalk Replacement



Statewide Trail Systems

Statewide Trail Maintenance & Materials

Maintenance, Equipment


Submitted by Newtown, CT

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