The long-held vision of a trail between Minden and Gardnerville is gaining ground through a joint application to the state that hopefully will secure grant funding.
Last week, both Minden and Gardnerville town boards approved ponying up $25,000 each, along with $25,000 from Douglas County, to match a Nevada Department of Transportation grant that would be used to construct a 9,617-foot-long pedestrian trail along Martin Slough between Carson Valley Middle School and Ironwood Drive.
In the application to the state, Community Development Director Mimi Moss said the project is a key element of the county's master trails plan.
"It eventually will extend all the way to Lampe Park, and serve both recreation and transportation purposes," she wrote.
Gardnerville Town Manager Tom Dallaire said the paved path would be 10 feet wide, with 2 feet of decomposed granite on either side for runners.
"We believe this project is consistent with the Nevada Department of Transportation, Douglas County and the Town of Gardnerville's goals to provide a safe, all-weather, bicycle and pedestrian connection to neighborhoods, parks and school facilities," read a letter of support signed off by town board members.
The estimated cost of the entire project is upwards of $700,000, Dallaire said, which is easier to fund when broken up into pieces.
The towns have agreed to maintain their respective portions of the trail in the future. Private enterprises are pitching in as well. Carson Valley Inn has agreed to build out a a section behind their expanded parking lot, and developers of the Ranch subdivision in Gardnerville will help connect the trail to Zerolene Road. Owners of the same project originally dedicated open space for the trail system.
n The Town of Gardnerville is also applying for an NDOT grant to improve ramps and install warning lights at four Gardnerville crosswalks along Highway 395: Mill, High School and Mission streets, and Kingslane.
"These will be solar powered or we can tap into our street lights to power the strobe lights that will flash once people activate the lights at the crosswalk," Dallaire wrote in his report. "We hope to relocate the storm drain manholes and drop inlets in order to comply with the ADA code. Currently none of these ramps comply with the current ADA requirements."
Dallaire said the upgrades would enhance safety at both Carson Valley Middle School and Gardnerville Elementary School. Students of both campuses walk to and from school on a daily basis.
"Eventually the Kingslane crossing will be part of that trek between Lampe and Jake's Wetland," he said.
The project is estimated to cost $370,469. Under the agreement, the town would match $15,000 and also provide about $6,000-$10,000 in engineering work.
n Gardnerville board members approved a $3.25 million 2012-13 tentative budget last week.
The general fund budget came in at about $1.7 million for the next fiscal year, with debt service at about $124,000, and ad valorem capital project revenue just over $152,000.
Because the town has finished paying off the financing of its administrative offices, only about $45,000 of ad valorem capital project funding will spent on a new industrial lawn mower, Dallaire said.
"We'll buy the lawn mower next year and start saving for other purchases," he said. "We can use those funds for any equipment that we're going to use for 10 years or more."
The public works budget for next year, included in the general fund, is tentatively set at $250,000, which will be used for resurfacing streets in Chichester Estates.
The town's trash fund came in at $1.26 million for next year, including reserves and depreciation, and Main Street Gardnerville, a separate fund, has a budget of approximately $127,429.
"Revenues were down just slightly," said Dallaire. "Assessed value was down about $1.5 million this year, instead of $12 million last year."