Monday, May 21, 2007

$50,000 Available for Trail Projects

Years ago, when faced with land management agencies who were less than enthusiastic about new trails and even about maps showing where the existing trails were, BATCO had the revolutionary idea of publishing a comprehensive map of Boulder County trails and using the proceeds to actually improve and expand the Boulder County trail system. The truly remarkable thing is that this bold idea is now becoming reality. BATCO now has almost $50,000 available for trail projects throughout Boulder County. Even more remarkable is the fact that a recent grant to produce a second edition of the map means that this revenue flow is likely to continue.

This success has left BATCO with a bit of a problem: what are the best ways to spend the money?

We need your help:
- first, to identify worthwhile projects
- next, to garner community enthusiasm
- and finally, to secure the approval of the relevant land management agencies.

This is a great opportunity. It gives trail advocates a unique chance to bring real money to the table when we start advocating for improvements to the system.

Given the significant amounts of money involved, BATCO has developed the attached "request for proposals." (Keep in mind that this is a new adventure and we welcome suggestions for improving the RFP and the entire project funding process.)

BATCO is willing to consider any project idea which is consistent with our overall goal of enhancing opportunities for non-motorized Boulder County Trail users. Preliminary ideas, wish lists, formal proposals, and offers to help are all welcome.

There is real money here. How do YOU think we can best use it???

Please circulate this announcement to the members of your respective groups, friends, fellow trail users and possible corporate-matching supporters.

And, if you have ideas, that you would you think might be worth pursuing contact Suzanne Webel at 303-485-2162 or . At this point we are asking people who might be interested in taking advantage of this opportunity to let us know by June 1. This will give us a chance to maximize our impact on 2007-2008 trail development projects.

We look forward to hearing from you soon!

-- Guy

Boulder Area Trails Coalition (BATCO) Trail Fund
Call for Proposals

Unlike other Boulder area trail maps, revenues from the sale of the BATCO Comprehensive Trail Map of Boulder County are to be used exclusively for trail projects in Boulder County. With almost $50,000 already available in this fund as of April 1, 2007, BATCO is issuing a public Call for Proposals for Trail Projects in Boulder County. We are interested in funding the design and construction of new trails, the enhancement of existing trails, and other projects that will significantly improve the quality of the visitor experience on public lands.

BATCO hereby solicits short (approximately 2-3 pages plus a map) letters of interest from Boulder County land-management agencies, trail and outdoor recreation groups, corporations, and even individuals wishing to “champion” a trail project.
Following an evaluation of these letters of interest by the BATCO Board of Directors, BATCO will invite those with the best ideas to submit detailed proposals. We will ask that these full proposals include the following information:
  • Specific plans for the trail projects to be constructed
  • A work plan to be followed in constructing the project
  • Budget with a description of financial and in-kind contributions (including volunteer labor) to be applied to the project
  • Formal letters of support from appropriate land-use agencies whose approval and participation will be required for the project to proceed.

Letters of inquiry and formal proposals will be evaluated on the basis of the following criteria:

  • Attractiveness of the proposed project to a broad range of trail users.
  • Value-added potential. Our highest funding priority involves projects, or significant
    project enhancements, that would otherwise not be possible
  • Matching Support for the project including direct financial support and in-kind, time and
    material contributions
  • Enthusiastic "project champion" support from people willing to do the leadership work
    required to make the project a success
  • Support from relevant land-use agencies
  • Ability to successfully address environmental or historical preservation concerns
  • Ability to successfully address the concerns of project neighbors.

This is a new program of the Boulder Area Trails Coalition, and we welcome suggestions for implementing it. We also urge those interested in applying for a grant to sign up for our e-mail update list. This will allow us to notify you if any improvements are made to the program. If you would like to contribute to the project by donating money or expertise, helping us distribute maps, or promoting trail projects but can’t be a “Trail Champion” right now, please contact Suzanne Webel at 303-485-2162.

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