New Research Finds Public Investment in Trails, Walking and Biking Infrastructure Delivers a Huge Return on Investment - but Return could be 4X Greater | Rails-to-Trails Conservancy

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Rails-to-Trails Conservancy (RTC) today released findings from “Active Transportation Transforms America,” the nation’s most comprehensive analysis of the quantifiable impact of trails, walking and biking on the places we live.

The study, which aggregated data about the health cost savings, climate protection, mobility and direct economic value of trails and active transportation, found that currently active transportation infrastructure contributes more than $34.1 billion to the U.S. economy annually. As infrastructure connectivity improves, the economic contribution of active transportation infrastructure has the potential to be more than $138.5 billion each year, a return that’s nearly seven times greater every year than the cumulative investment of $20 billion that’s been made in trails and walking and biking projects via federal programs over the past three decades.