Trails can highlight a region’s cultural history and landscape, by connecting people to landscape features like rivers and overlooks as well as historical places like bridges and battlegrounds. Trails help people to honor what came before; what happened right where they are standing. These are essential features to creating a sense of place and community identity.
Trails are free. They are open 24/7. There’s no entrance fee, no membership fee. They are access to beautiful places to be active that anyone can enjoy.
For a community to remain relevant and attractive to keep residents around and lure in new ones, they have to be a desirable place to live. Trails are a key part of the formula for creating a livable community. Because people value quiet areas, open spaces, and want the opportunities for an active lifestyle, trails are attractive to them.
Trails are a significant community asset, and represent a new “town square”, providing a meeting place for people to congregate with their families and friends. Additionally trails allow for a break from the television, computer, and phone, providing some much needed downtime from today’s busy world.
There is a road right next to almost everywhere people go today, as a result people don’t get to go to many solely natural places. Trails give people access to areas that are more isolated and surrounded by nature, areas that are quiet and calm, that are corridors of living things. Exploring these quiet places allow people to anchor themselves and reset from the stress that so often envelops human lives.
Trails and greenways provide safer corridors of transportation for pedestrians and bikers. The concern about safety is one of the highest barriers to people riding bikes. As a result, many people who like to walk or bike in their community are discouraged when the only option is a road. Greenways encourage more walking and biking while also keeping people safer.