Paris – Lamar County officials are hoping to extend its current 5.5 mile recreational trail to nine miles following approval this week of a grant application through the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. The $457,000 grant, if approved, would require at least a 20 percent match. The trail would then be extended another 3.5 miles to Blossom.
Lamar County Judge Chuck Superville says, "The trails that exist would improve by having that additional trail, and then the additional trail is made all the more valuable because it's connected to the existing trail. So it's a highly synergistic project in my opinion."
The trail currently connects two schools, Paris Junior College and Paris ISD. With approval of the 3.5 stretch, the trail would also connect to Prairiland ISD in Blossom.
Judge Superville says the new trail would also allow for a lane to ride horses.
"It's a very popular trail with the City of Paris and the City of Reno. This particular trail that we're talking about would extend that trail and provide an equine portion of the trail which I don't believe the Paris or Reno trail has."
Superville hopes the trail can be just another piece to the puzzle of an entire section of trail across Northeast Texas.
A few years back, officials applied for what would have been the fourth largest trail in America through the North Central Texas Council of Governments, but were denied the highly competitive grant. It would have stretched approximately 100 miles from Farmersville to Texarkana. Since then, local municipalities have had to work within their own means to construct such trails.