Cyclists: Rock Island Trail vital to towns' growth | Jefferson City News-Tribune

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Dozens of proponents of the proposed Rock Island Trail gathered Friday at the Missouri Capitol and in downtown Jefferson City.

Supporters of an extension of the bike trail from Windsor to Beaufort said it is already bringing economic benefits to towns along a 47-mile stretch that opened in December.

A Jefferson City official said the city is looking at ways to connect the city to the trail.

The Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation, which helps promote bicycling and advocates for new bike trails in Missouri, held the second MO Active Transportation Summit at the Jefferson City Police Department on Friday to find ways to make Missouri communities more active and sustainable. Much of the conversation centered around the Rock Island Trail and its proposed 144-mile extension.

Greg Harris, executive director of the nonprofit group Missouri Rock Island Trail Inc., which partnered with the federation to hold the event, said the Katy Trail, which opened in 1996, gets plenty of attention. But as it ages and Missouri's cycling community grows, the goal is to promote other bike trails and bike infrastructure improvements, he said.

Towns on a small section of the Rock Island Trail that opened in December in western Missouri have opened their first bike shops, Harris said.
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"The Katy Trail is almost ancient history," Harris said. "When you have mayors and city administrators saying, 'This is what it means to us,' that's the whole point of this."

MoBikeFed comment: Remember to complete the Missouri State Parks Survey in support of the trail--and make sure all of your family members and friends have completed the survey as well.

The Survey is open until August 31st, 2017, and a brief comment saying that you support the trail is all that is needed.

Complete the survey here:

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