Bay Trail Dealt a Blow: Arcata's TIGER Grant Application Not Funded


Bad news for those hoping to see a bike and pedestrian trail built between Arcata and Eureka: The City of Arcata today got shot down in its application for a $2.7 million grant from the federal Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) program. As this week's cover story mentions, the city — and county — had been placing a great deal of hope in the application. The money would have been spent to build a section of trail from Arcata to Bracut, roughly halfway to Eureka on the west side of U.S. Route 101.

TIGER grant recipients were announced earlier today. In all, $474 million was awarded to 52 projects in 37 states. But Arcata will have to find funding for its trail project elsewhere. Local officials had successfully solicited support for the grant from U.S. Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, Congressman Jared Huffman and virtually every local environmental group. Caltrans had committed $1 million in matching funds. But the support wasn't enough.

Hank Seemann, the county's deputy director of environmental sciences, recently told the Journal that the grant had potential to jump-start momentum for a bay trail connecting Arcata and Eureka. The hypothetical trail is one of the major issues in the upcoming Coastal Commission hearing on the 101 safety corridor.

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