Virginia’s biennium budget was finalized this past June, and with it comes funding for trails. A new rail trail running through Botetourt and Craig counties—the Craig Botetourt Scenic Trail is one of five priority trails identified by the General Assembly to receive support from the appropriation.
The Craig Botetourt Scenic Trail will parallel Craigs Creek and run 26 miles from New Castle in Craig County to Eagle Rock in Botetourt County. It is anticipated to be a gravel trail that utilizes existing railbeds and some shared roadways. Funding will go toward bridge repairs and preparing the trail surface; a multi-use trail for walking, running, biking, and horseback riding, that provides opportunities for residents and visitors to engage with the scenic beauty of Craig and Botetourt counties and Virginia’s Blue Ridge.
“People will be able to enjoy this unique and historical scenic trail with ease,” says Jessie Spence, chairman of Craig County Board of Supervisors. “The Craig Botetourt Scenic Trail will be an outstanding asset to Craig County, Botetourt County, and the region. It will be one of the most scenic, if not the most scenic, trails in the commonwealth.”
“The Virginia Creeper Trail, a similar trail to the proposed Craig Botetourt Scenic Trail, generates $2.3 million annually for its rural local economy when adjusted for inflation,” says Delegate Terry Austin who was instrumental in securing funding for the Craig Botetourt Scenic Trail. “I very much look forward to how this trail will benefit the community and will open the door for more business opportunities like bike shops, coffee shops, restaurants, and lodging—all these ventures and more will be possible with the influx of trail users.”
~ Fincastle Herald staff report
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