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Recreational Trails Program (RTP)

Grants to North Dakota Nonprofits and Agencies
to Provide Recreational Trails for All Uses

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department (NDPRD)

Deadline Date:

04/08/19 5:00 PM CT


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Grants starting at $10,000 to North Dakota nonprofit organizations government agencies, and park districts for the development, restoration, and maintenance of recreational trails for non-motorized and motorized use. Priority is given to the construction of new trails. Funding is intended for projects such as restoration of existing trails, development and rehabilitation of trailside and trailhead facilities and trail linkages, purchase and lease of recreational trail construction and maintenance equipment, land acquisition/easements, and trail accessibility assessment.

Projects will be ranked based on the categories below.
1. Construction of new recreation trails: For projects on federal land, the most important requirement is that the federal agency land manager must approve of the project in accordance with other applicable federal laws and regulations. This category may include construction of new trail bridges, or providing appropriate signage along a trail.
2. Restoration of existing trails: Restoration may be interpreted broadly to include any kind of non-deferred trail maintenance, restoration, rehabilitation, or relocation. This category may include maintenance and restoration of trail bridges, or providing appropriate signage along a trail.
3. Development and rehabilitation of trailside and trailhead facilities and trail linkages: This may be interpreted broadly to include development or rehabilitation of any trailside and trailhead facility. The definition of “rehabilitation” means extensive trail repair needed to bring a facility up to standards suitable for public use due to natural disasters or acts of nature. Trailside and trailhead facilities must have a direct relationship with a recreational trail.
4. Purchase and lease of recreational trail construction and maintenance equipment: Purchase and lease of any trail construction and maintenance equipment, provided the equipment is used primarily to construct and maintain recreational trails. This provision does not include purchase of equipment which may be used for purposes unrelated to recreational trails.
5. Land acquisition/easements: RTP legislation prohibits condemnation of any kind of interest in property. Therefore, acquisition of any kind of interest in property must be from a willing landowner or seller.
6. Trail accessibility assessment: Assessment of trail conditions for accessibility and maintenance.

For information about Land Acquisitions and Easements, see:

RTP Legislation requires that States use 40 percent of their funds in a fiscal year for diverse recreational trail use; 30 percent for motorized recreation; and 30 percent for non-motorized recreation. To provide more flexibility in RTP project selection, FHWA established five categories to account for the 40-30-30 requirements. For more information, see:

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 177296

Estimated Size of Grant:

- Minimum grant request dollar amount is $10,000.
- Maximum grant request dollar amount is $200,000.

Term of Contract:

When applying for project funding, the project sponsor must be ready to begin construction upon grant approval. This requirement includes having all local match available and all project planning complete. Once the project sponsors are notified of their project approval and funding level, they have 18 months to complete the project.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Grants may be awarded to any of the following:
-Nonprofit organizations
-Municipal agencies (cities, towns, counties, school districts, etc.)
-State agencies (North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department, North Dakota Forest Service, North Dakota Game and Fish).
-Federal government agencies (Bureau of Land Management, U.S. Forest Service, National Park Service, etc.)
-Other government entities (regional governments, etc.)

Only federal, state and municipal agencies qualify for funding of recreational trail construction and maintenance equipment.

A qualified nonprofit organization is one that meets the following criteria:
-Registered with the State of North Dakota as a non-profit for a minimum of 5 years.
-Will name a successor at the time of any change in organizational status (for example, dissolution). A qualified successor is any party that meets the eligibility criteria to apply for RTP funds and is capable of complying with all RTP responsibilities. NDPRD recommends, whenever possible, a government agency be sought as a successor.

Ineligible Projects/Expenses
-Condemned Land as Matching Value: RTP legislation prohibits using RTP funds for condemnation of any kind of interest in property. An RTP project may be located on land condemned with funds from other sources. However, it is not permissible to use the value of condemned land toward the match requirement for an RTP project.
-Feasibility Studies: Trail feasibility studies are not a use permitted in the RTP legislation. The permissible uses relate to actual on-the- ground trail projects.
-Environmental Evaluation and Documentation: Projects intended solely for the purpose of covering environmental evaluation and documentation expenses are not permissible. Reasonable environmental evaluation and documentation expenses, including costs associated with environmental permits and approvals, may be included as part of an approved project’s engineering costs. Expenses incurred developing the environmental evaluation, necessary permits, as well as engineering costs, may not exceed 20% of the total funded grant amount. Project expenses, in which a project sponsor will seek reimbursement via the grant, may not occur prior to the project start date. The project start date will be provided once the FHWA approves the project. The project start date will be provided to the project sponsor by the NDPRD.
-Law Enforcement: Routine law enforcement is not a use permitted in the RTP legislation.
-Planning: Trail planning is not a permissible use of RTP funds.
-Sidewalks: RTP funds will not normally be used to provide paths or sidewalks along or adjacent to public roads or streets, unless the path or sidewalk is needed to complete a missing link between other recreational trails.
-Roads: RTP funds may not be used to improve roads for general passenger vehicle use.
-Overhead: The regular operating expenses such as rent, building upkeep, utilities and all fixed costs associated with a business, agency or group.
-Indirect Costs: Only direct costs that can be identified specifically with a particular final cost objective directly related to the trail project are eligible.

For ineligible costs related to land acquisitions and easements see:

Pre-Application Information:

The current RTP application cycle for FY19 projects is open. The application cycle is open from February 1, 2019, to April 8, 2019, at 5:00 P.M. Central Time.

Local sponsors must pay all project costs upfront and then request reimbursement. Partial reimbursement may be requested as soon as possible or at least every six months. RTP grants reimburse up to 80% of the total project cost. At the time of application, the project sponsor must have at least 20% of the total project cost available to meet the match requirements. The local share may include tax sources, bond issues, force account contributions, donated labor, equipment and materials.

Contact Information:

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

Please submit one electronic copy of the application to:

Or mail application to:

North Dakota Parks and Recreation Department
Attn: Grants Coordinator
1600 E. Century Ave. Suite 3
Bismarck, ND 58506-5594


URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: North Dakota