Tioga Recreation Area

The trail at Tioga Recreation Area was quiet Tuesday afternoon. Once the trail project is complete, people will be able to start at Tioga and connect to trails throughout Grand Rapids.

Staff Report

Herald Review

In January, the Grand Rapids City Council accepted a Regional Trail grant from Minnesota’s Department of Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation (IRRR) to continue work for Phase II of the communities’ connector project. The funding will help complete the final trail connector link between Grand Rapids and Cohasset next summer.

“Now therefore, be it resolved, the City Council of the City of Grand Rapids, Itasca County Minnesota accepts the $250,000 grant from the Iron Range Resources and Rehabilitation (IRRR) for CP 2015-3, Highway 2 West Trail and furthermore authorizes the Mayor to execute the associated grant agreement.”

The above resolution was passed at the Jan. 13 regular session of the Grand Rapids City Council. Phase I of the communities’ connector project began last summer in 2019 with a one-mile stretch of multi-use trail connecting Cohasset and Grand Rapids. The 10-feet wide connector runs alongside County Road 63 connecting the trail system throughout Grand Rapids to Tioga Recreation Area.

Both cities will share the responsibility of daily and long-term upkeep of the trail with a 20-year joint maintenance agreement, according to a press release from the IRRR.

“The new trail project is an excellent example of how collaboration between two communities can bring residents great results,” said Matt Wegwerth, Grand Rapids city engineer. “The people of Cohasset and Grand Rapids have access to a shared resource that expands their quality of life and recreation options.”

The Parks and Trails Council of Minnesota reported the importance of parks and trails to Minnesota’s state economic output.

“One of our agency’s goals is that communities within our service area invest in their foundational and social assets to ensure quality of life,” said Mark Phillips, Iron Range & Resources Rehabilitation commissioner. “The collaboration between Grand Rapids and Cohasset to connect their two cities is exactly the type of project that achieves that goal. They are strengthening their communities for their residents, tourists and businesses.”

Iron Range Resources & Rehabilitation provided a Regional Trails grant which helped pay for the trail construction. Other project partners included Minnesota DNR Local Connections grant program, the cities of Cohasset and Grand Rapids, and Itasca County.

A Regional Trails grant provided by the IRRR also helped pay for Phase I of the trail constructions. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Local Connections grant program, Itasca County, and the cities of Cohasset and Grand Rapids were other project partners. For more information on Regional Trails grant information call Jim Plummer at 218-274-7006.

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