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MassTrails Grant

Grants to Massachusetts Agencies and Nonprofits
to Develop, Construct, and Maintain Recreational Trails

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) - MassTrails

Deadline Date:

02/01/20 11:59 PM Receipt


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Grants starting from $5,000 to Massachusetts nonprofits, agencies, and municipalities for projects to develop, construct, and maintain recreational trails and pathways. Funding is intended to fill in gaps in existing trail networks and to expand existing trails and amenities.

Eligible project activities can include:

  • Trail planning, design, engineering, and permitting;
  • Construction of new trails;
  • Maintenance and restoration of existing trails;
  • Development and rehabilitation of trailside and trailhead amenities;
  • Purchase and lease of trail-related construction and maintenance equipment;
  • Acquisition (in limited cases) of easements and fee interest in property for trail corridors.

Types of trails can include shared use pathways (e.g., Charles River Pathway, Mystic River Greenway); rail trails (e.g., Mass Central Rail Trail, Norwottuck Rail Trail, Clipper City Rail Trail); natural surface trail systems (e.g., Appalachian Trail, Worcester East-West Trail, Stone Farm Trail System in Brockton); community/accessible trails with various surfaces (e.g., Riverwalk in Great Barrington, Watertown Riverfront Park and Braille Trail, New Bedford Harborwalk); water trails (e.g., Connecticut River Paddlers Trail, Assebet River Trail); and off-road motorized trails (e;.g., accommodate ATV’s, off-road motorcycles, snowmobiles).

Grant Criteria and Preferred Specifications:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 164571

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grant amounts are dependent on the project and its needs, but generally range from $5,000 to $100,000 with grants of up to $300,000 awarded to projects demonstrating critical network connections of regional significance.

Term of Contract:

Most project development and design projects will have one year to complete all spending and match under the grant, with funding available within the state fiscal year (July 1st to June 30th of the following year).

Trail construction and maintenance projects may be permitted a longer timeframe of up to two years, dependent on the scope and specifications of the project.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

MassTrails Grants are available to municipalities, state or federal agencies, and nonprofit organizations. Two or more entities can apply jointly, with one acting as the fiscal agent. MassTrails grants can be in addition to other forms of secured local, state, and federal assistance that the applicant has received.

Sidewalks and/or road improvements are not eligible as trail projects under this program.

Ineligible project costs include, but are not limited to, costs associated with the preparation and submission of a grant application, administrative supplies/equipment and the purchase of food.

Pre-Application Information:

Applications must be received by 11:59 PM, Saturday, February 1, 2020.

Notification to applicants on the status of their grant application is expected to be on or about 120 days after the grant application deadline. All applicants will be notified by email and informed of the status of their proposed project (approved or not).

MassTrails grants are reimbursable, meaning grantees must first pay for expenditures themselves and then submit for reimbursement using the required documentation.

MassTrails grants are matching grants and require that proponents provide a minimum of 20% of the total project cost. Projects with higher match commitments will be given greater consideration.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:

Amanda Lewis
MassTrails Program Manager, Department of Conservation and Recreation
136 Damon Road, Northampton, MA 01060

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Massachusetts

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