Community News

Allegany County Awarded a Pre-Planning Grant for Connection Trail

July 6, 2020

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Allegany County Awarded a Pre-Planning Grant for Connection Trail

BELMONT, NY – The Allegany County Office of Planning has been awarded a $50,000 design and access grant by the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Legacy Funds administered by the Community Foundation for Greater Buffalo. Funds will be used for route planning and easement research.

Michelle Denhoff, Planning and Development Specialist for Allegany County, said that the project will be completed in phases to determine a trail route that will provide a 20-mile missing connect between the WAG trail in Wellsville and the Genesee Valley Greenway trail in Belfast. “This is a very important missing link to a larger 230-mile trail system, the Triple Divide Trail, connecting users from Lake Ontario down to the Susquehanna River in Williamsport, PA.” Denhoff continued on that this opportunity for trail expansion could bring a huge economic benefit to our communities. “Once this portion of the work is complete, we will determine if a connection is feasible and move on to the other phases of the project.”

This is the start of a long-term collaborative effort between Allegany County and its many trail stakeholders, as the County Legislature plans to appoint members of the community to the Trails and Outdoor Recreation Advisory Committee at the July legislative committee meetings. The established group is set to advise the Planning and Economic Development Committee on fostering development of a county-wide trail system.

Two other entities were also awarded grant funds through this fund to assist in trail work and design, Alfred University for trails on Jericho Hill, and the Catt/Chau Chapter of the New York State Horse Council for equestrian trail work in the West Almond area. This was a very unique opportunity for Allegany County and we are very thankful to have received these monies.

The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Legacy Funds were established at the Community Foundation to provide support to four areas that were important to Mr. Wilson: caregivers, community assets, design and access, and youth sports. Endowment funds, like these created to honor Mr. Wilson, are designed to grow over time and provide funding for charitable causes according to a client’s wishes.