Sunset Park Press Release
- Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition
- Waynesboro, Virginia
- [email protected]
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition is excited to announce a final trail plan for Sunset Park in Waynesboro, Virginia. The plan, developed through a Trails Accelerator Grant (TAG) with the International Mountain Bicycling Association (IMBA), calls for over 4 miles of natural surface singletrack trails on the eastern portion of Waynesboro’s soon-to-be-opened Sunset Park.
“The Bicycle Coalition is grateful to have collaborated with the City of Waynesboro and IMBA to develop a shovel-ready plan for increasing access to trails and the outdoors,” said Kyle Lawrence, Executive Director of the Coalition. “This plan will provide a foundation and vision for community-centric trails close to home for many people. Once funded and complete, the trails will complement the Shenandoah Valley’s robust trail opportunities.”
Support from the Virginia Outdoors Foundation’s Go Outdoors grant and the Community Foundation of Central Blue Ridge were both instrumental in funding the professional planning efforts provided through the TAG.
The natural surface singletrack trails will provide a necessary gateway experience often lacking on surrounding public lands. With an emphasis on beginner and intermediate opportunities, the goal is to connect more people to the outdoors through accessible trails. Compared to surrounding mountainous opportunities, planned trails will provide a more welcoming environment for new trail visitors.
World-class planning professionals from IMBA developed the trail alignments and plans for a shared-use trail network to accommodate people walking, running, and biking.
Sunset Park is currently under construction, with an expected opening date for the park proper in late 2023.
Trail construction funding still needs to be secured. The Bicycle Coalition is applying for grant funds, seeking community partners, and launching a fundraising campaign to help kickstart the construction of trails in Sunset Park before the end of 2023. Learn more at SVBCoalition.org/Sunset
“I am grateful for the opportunity to turn our attention to a part of our community that has lacked investment, and to provide access to neighborhoods that don’t currently have active and passive recreational space, and to make investments in them as much as our city and our visitors,” said At-Large Councilor Terry Short at the meeting after voting with the majority to approve the park project.
The Bicycle Coalition invites community members, businesses, and other partners to help fund the construction of this project. It looks forward to future collaboration between volunteers, funders, and eventually visitors to make the new trail plan for Sunset Park a reality. The team behind the professional master trail plan positioned it to leverage the needed resources for trail construction.
Sunset Park is a former landfill that closed in 2003. Importantly, trail construction will not occur on the landfill cap. Construction has begun on a restroom facility, picnic shelter, and two overlooks.
For more information about the trail plan or opportunities to get involved, please get in touch with Kyle Lawrence, Executive Director of the Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition, at (571) 277-8121.
About the Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition:
The Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition is a non-profit organization working to build better communities in the Valley through trails, biking, and walking.
About the IMBA Trails Accelerator Grant:
Trail Accelerator grants provide a jump-start to communities with the interest and political support to develop trail systems but need assistance to get projects up and running. A Trail Accelerator grant offers awardees professional trail planning and consultation services to launch their trail development efforts, which can often leverage additional investment from local, regional, and national partners.
About the Virginia Outdoors Foundation Get Outdoors Grant:
Established in 2020, the Virginia’s Outdoors Foundation’s Get Outdoors (GO) Fund provides grants for projects that increase access to safe open space in Virginia’s communities. The intent of the program is to serve as a flexible, adaptable tool to be used to address communities’ needs.
[Shenandoah Valley Bicycle Coalition]