Gov. Jim Justice announced on Friday, March 24, that the Town of Poca will receive $325,000 for the design and construction of the Poca Laurel Avenue Sidewalk Extension. Justice also reported that the City of Hurricane will be receiving $185,000 for design and construction of a project at Hurricane Meeks Mountain Trails.
The two grants are part of 38 Transportation Alternatives and Recreational Trails Program grant projects totaling $9,734,552 statewide for projects in 22 counties. The program is administered by the West Virginia Department of Transportation (WVDOT) and funded by the Federal Highway Administration to help towns and cities build and improve sidewalks, lighting, walking paths, rail trails and more.
“We’ve learned that investing in our cities, towns, and beautiful parks is one of the best ways to attract tourists and improve the daily lives of our residents,” Gov. Justice said. “This program provides millions of dollars to make some of the best places in West Virginia more accessible, which will also enhance visitation throughout the state. The positive economic ripple effects will be off the charts, and I couldn’t be prouder to approve these well-deserved initiatives.”
The City of Hurricane will use the funds to build a pump track in the open bowl area at the head of the Meeks Mountain Trail System. Jason Steorts of Meeks Mountain Trails Alliance stated that the pump track would be about the size of a football field and designed to accommodate BMX and mountain bikes. Steorts said that a section of the pump track would be designed for and devoted to use by less experienced and younger users.
Mayor Scott Edwards said the pump track will be located in open bowl area at the head of the Meeks Mountain Trail head. “I am very excited about this project. It is a huge addition which will make Hurricane a leader in recreational opportunities,” Edwards stated.
Steorts reported that the track will feature both asphalt and dirt sections with the course of the track repeatedly traversing the small stream which runs through the center of the location. Steorts said that he is not aware of a pump track in West Virginia which can come close to matching what the finished Meeks Mountain Trails track will offer.