City of Weston Lakes, Texas

City of Weston Lakes, Texas

Weston Lakes, Texas

1093 Rails to Trails

The 1093 Rails to Trails local government corporation includes the City of Wallis, the City of Eagle Lake, the City of Weston Lakes, the City of Fulshear, and Austin County. Through the corporation, these entities are working to build a shared-use trail along a rail corridor from Fulshear to Eagle Lake that can accommodate recreational cyclists, create a tourist destination, and generally improve connectivity and safety.

1093 RAILS-TO-TRAIL PROJECT OVERVIEW

Context: The Fort Bend County Toll Road Authority (FBCTRA) acquired thirty-one miles of abandoned rail line in 2015. FBCTRA fielded a proposal to convert the rail right-of-way to a

multi-use trail-the project was deemed viable and the FBCTRA has offered to enter into a lease agreement. Interested municipalities along the right-of-way have the unique opportunity to help plan and implement the trail. The vehicle to accomplish these tasks is the formation of a local government corporation (LGC). While the LGC is formalized, LGC board members are preparing an application for the National Parks Service Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program for technical assistance with trail design concept plans.

Local Government Corporation Meetings: LGC board members from Austin County, Eagle Lake, Fulshear, Wallis, and Weston Lakes have been meeting monthly in anticipation of formal approval from the Secretary of State. The LGC will continue to work with the Houston-Galveston Area Council and other partners to (1) develop a plan for the trail, (2) develop a project schedule, and (3) fundraise for trail construction and maintenance.

Primary Objectives

  • Form an organization to raise funds for eventual construction of the trail;
  • Engage members of the community and local and county governments throughout the planning process; and
  • Construct the trail in phases as funding becomes available.

Rivers, Trails, and Conservation Assistance Program {RTCA): A program of the National Parks Service, RTCA provides selected applicants free, on-location facilitation and planning assistance. Learn more at nps.qov/orgs/rtca. Applications are due March 1, 2022. This is an opportunity for the LGC to build organizational capacity and develop an initial concept plan for the trail.

Trail Design Goals

  • Design a high-quality, attractive, and safe trail;
  • Design a trail that minimizes maintenance requirements; and
  • Develop a trail route and layout that encourages economic development and promotes tourism in communities that desire it.

History & Status as of April 2022

This initial discussions to covert the abandoned rail line started in 2017 and with a few dedicated volunteers from entities along the path, the journey began to formally incorporate a LGC. The Secretary of State recently approved the 1093 Rails-to-Trails LGC and the first Board Meeting was held at the Wallis Community Room on Monday, April 4, 2022 at 2pm.

Future board Meetings are scheduled to be held at the Wallis Community Center on the first Monday of each Month at 4pm. Meeting Agendas will be posted by each participating entity.

The initial action items are to finalize the lease of the abandoned rail from FBCTRA and refine planning to raise funds and start work for construction of the trail