MO State Parks schedules important Rock Island Trail meetings October 29, 30, Nov 1 along the RI corridor - Please plan to attend if you can

Please plan to attend one of these important upcoming meetings about the future of the remaining 144 miles of the potential cross-state Rock Island Trail between Windsor and Washington.

Missouri State Park's decision about whether to accept the next 144-mile segment
Missouri State Park's decision about whether to accept the next 144-mile segment of the Rock Island Trail--shown in red on this map--will be announced at these public meetings, held Oct 20, Oct 30, Nov 1 in Owensville, Versailles, and Meta

After a long process of investigation and public comment, Missouri State Parks has scheduled three meetings to present their conclusions about developing the remaining 144 miles of the Rock Island railroad corridor into a long-distance recreational trail, becoming Missouri's second cross-state trail.

The trail is a tremendous opportunity for sustainable, long-term economic development for dozens of communities along the corridor that have been left behind since the closure of the Rock Island railroad in the early 1980s. Will Missouri seize the opportunity to create another internationally significant trail and tourism destination, or not?

Decision deadline on Rock Island Corridor approaching early 2019

The deadline for State Parks to make a decision whether or not to accept the Rock Island corridor and transform it into a trail is early 2019.  State Parks has been working through 2018 on a plan for doing so, and weighing the pluses and minuses.

We anticipate that these meetings will inform the public about whether or not State Parks intends to accept the corridor, and accept public comment about that decision.

At the time, we do not know whether or not State Parks is intending to accept the corridor or what their plan or conclusions look like.

The meetings are located in fairly remote locations in Missouri along the Rock Island corridor.  But this decision affects all Missourians, wherever you live.  If at all possible, please plan to travel and attend one of these meetings in person, as those in-person contacts carry by far the most weight.

Three meetings--please plan to attend if you can: Oct 29 (Owensville), Oct 30 (Versailles), Nov 1 (Meta)

From the Missouri State Parks press release:

Missouri's Rock Island corridor has amazing potential as a cross-state trail
Missouri's Rock Island corridor has amazing potential as a cross-state trail - potentially combining with the Katy Trail and other existing and planned trails systems to create a massive statewide trail network over 500 miles in length

Informational meetings planned for Rock Island Corridor

JEFFERSON CITY, MO, OCT. 12, 2018 – Missouri State Parks will hold a series of three informational meetings in communities along the Rock Island Line Corridor. The purpose of the open house-style meetings will be to discuss the potential effects on communities, citizens and Missouri State Parks if the Corridor were to be developed into a long-distance recreational trail.

The meetings will include information about the potential costs of trail development and operations, public safety, landowner and legal issues, environmental and natural resource issues and property management options.

The three meetings will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on the following dates and locations:

Monday, Oct. 29
Scenic Regional Library
503 S. Olive St., Owensville

Tuesday, Oct. 30
Morgan County Library
600 N. Hunter St., Versailles

Thursday, Nov. 1
Citizen's Civic League Hall
301 Olive St, Meta

Individuals requiring special services or accommodations to attend the meeting can make arrangements by calling 800-334-6946.

For information about state parks and historic sites, visit Missouri State Parks is a division of the Missouri Department of Natural Resources.

State Parks has not at the present time indicated any way for citizens to respond if they are not able to attend the meeting in person.  We will let you know if they make such an opportunity available, and are currently working with the Missouri Rock Island Trail, Inc., and other groups on possible ways for the public to weigh in on the decision.

In 2014 we presented these petitions of support to Ameren
In 2014 we worked with the Missouri Rock Island Trail, Inc, the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, and thousands of supporters across Missouri and the world to present over 12,000 messages of support for the Rock Island Trail to Ameren, who owns the trail and now wishes to donate it to Missouri State Parks

Rock Island corridor resources

You can see the Missouri State Parks summary of the Rock Island corridor issue, including maps, an FAQ, and announcements of the upcoming meetings on the Missouri State Parks Rock Island Corridor Page.

More about the history and background of the decades-long effort to preserve Missouri's Rock Island corridor as a cross-state trail on MoBikeFed's Rock Island Trail page.

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