Transit and Trail Connections Will Boost Public Access to Wildlife Refuges

Transit and Trail Connections Will Boost Public Access to Wildlife Refuges

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) has just released a national study on how to access more than 100 National Wildlife Refuges by public transit and trails. The concept of using public transportation to link parks and other public land sites to population centers was showcased at Partners Outdoors 2010 for the San Francisco Bay Area, and served as the catalyst for the FWS initiative. The agency worked with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Volpe Center to evaluate 142 National Wildlife Refuges – mostly urban and suburban – for connections to existing or potential transit and trail resources. The program “will be a new tool for Fish and Wildlife staff, partner agencies, and friends groups to recognize potential connections, set priorities for future planning, and ultimately enhance alternative transportation access to National Wildlife Refuges,” according to the report summary. The report, entitled Transit and Trail Connections: Assessment of Visitor Access to National Wildlife Refuges, was prepared with Paul S. Sarbanes Transit in the Parks Program funds authorized under the Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users (SAFETEA-LU). Phase Two of the initiative, also funded through SAFETEA-LU, will be a communications and promotions effort this year that will include an online guide. A copy of the complete 42-page report is available by clicking here.