House bonding proposal funds Glacial Lakes Trail extension
NEW LONDON — Funds for connecting the Glacial Lakes Trail in New London to Sibley State Park are included in the $975 million bonding bill unveiled in the Minnesota House of Representatives on Tuesday.
The Minnesota Parks and Trails Council reported that the House bonding bill includes $19.4 million to fund trail acquisition and development for 13 trail projects across the state.
The bill includes $1.5 million of the total for the Glacial Lakes Trail extension. The funds would allow for the acquisition of easements and properties needed to make the approximate five-mile connection possible.
Inclusion in the House bonding proposal keeps the project in contention as the Legislature debates a final bonding bill.
Current plans for the trail call for it to use existing right of way along Kandiyohi County Road 40 from New London, according to Jeremy Losinski, area supervisor, State Parks and Trails, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.
The plans call for the extension to go through the New London-Spicer school grounds, follow County Road 40 and continue under U.S. Highway 71 before jogging north to the park. While as much of the route as possible would use county road right of way, easements would be needed on some private lands.
State Rep. Mary Sawatzky, DFL-Willmar, is the chief sponsor of the Glacial Lakes funding proposal in the House.
Losinski said the trail extension has enjoyed support from local government units, area legislators and the Sibley State Park Improvement Association.