PARIS, Texas - For years the city has tried to expand the Trail de Paris into the western section of town and after receiving over $500,000 in grant money from TxDOT, the expansion is now within reach.
"There's some details to come, but we are very excited about the grant overall." said city engineer Shawn Napier.
The new section of the trail will begin at Heritage Park and extend over two miles northeast to the Red River Fair Grounds, eventually connecting to the Trail de Paris and Northeast trail when construction is complete on the west side.
"West Paris just kind of fell together with using former rail road corridors and the city happened to own a large portion of this one." said Napier.
The extension will connect several city parks and schools.
"We're tying together a lot of different things with this program and also it will be in conjunction with our safe rides to school." said Napier.
Safe rides to school inspires kids to walk or ride their bikes to school.
"Part of this grant is just to get kids motivated again, to hey lets ride our bikes or walk to school and have a safe route to get there." said Paris ISD Superintendent Paul Jones.
The extension will add sidewalks and bike lanes around Justiss Elementary and Givens Early Childhood, providing children with a safer route to school.
"Our kids are walking on the street, their riding their bicycles on the street." said Jones. " There might be a few sidewalks along the the path to school, but there are kids actually having to walk on the street."
The city is collaborating with TxDot on a time table for the project.