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Action Steps


Advance environmental stewardship by reducing automobile dependence protecting North Carolina's natural resources through a network of greenways.

ID Recommended Action Step Idea Lead Agency Agency Partner(s) Chapter Ref.
EN1 Develop GIS database of trails in North Carolina. Formulate and promote the use of a consistent categorization of data for different trail types. Build upon existing efforts and resources, such as the Green Growth Toolbox. Consider housing the data as part of NC One Map, since it is already accessible to various agencies. DENR, NC Wildlife Resources Commission NCDOT-DBPT, East Coast Greenway Alliance, Friends of the Mountains to Sea Trail, Federal agencies, local governments, National Geographic 9.6
EN2 Calculate number of miles of existing and proposed greenway/trail facilities in North Carolina. Provide this information on a statewide/regional/subregional level. DENR NCDOT-DBPT, DPR, East Coast Greenway Alliance, Friends of the Mountains to Sea Trail 9.6
EN3 Utilize Conservation Planning Tool (CPT) for all comprehensive Transportation Planning Branch efforts. NCDOT Transportation Planning Branc, NC Wildlife Resources Commission DENR, DPR, MPOs/RPOs, local governments 9.6
EN4 Implement land use/transportation integration recommendations in Chapter 5 of this Plan so that communities can better determine where to grow and where to protect (Include updating of zoning, subdivision, and other local ordinances to support strategic land use planning and alternative transportation choices). Build upon NCDOT’s Integration Project (Linking Long Range Transportation Planning and Project Development). MPOs, local governments NCDOT 5
EN5 Develop trail design guidelines based on best practices for use by multiple agencies to include Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED), guidance for environmentally-sensitive areas, and sustainable trail construction methods and specifications. Collaborate between NCDOT and DENR to design guideline package. NCDOT, DENR Input from agencies in other states that employ national best practices for trail design guidance 9.6
EN6 Connect people and towns with a pedestrian and bicycle greenway network across the state. Connect to state parks and major destinations (stadiums, fairgrounds, museums, cultural institutions in North Carolina). Partner with Conservation Trust for NC (24 land trusts in North Carolina) to further develop trail systems through shared goals of connecting to nature, improving health, etc. NCDOT, DENR Local governments, Conservation Trust for NC and its 24 land trust 9.6
EN7 Develop a Greenprint for the State of NC, mapping natural and cultural areas and connecting them through a system of trails and economic development opportunities. Build upon existing efforts and resources, such as the Green Growth Toolbox and the NC One Map. DENR, DPR, NC Wildlife Resources Commission Conservation Trust for NC and its 24 land trusts, Healthy Environments Collaborative, local governments in capital area, private sector 9.6
EN8 Adopt high-priority performance measures described in Chapter 8 and Appx. 9.11. NCDOT, DENR 8, 9.11
EN9 Track number of people using trails in North Carolina (this action step parallels with this WalkBikeNC’s performance measures). Adopt and utilize a consitent counting methodology across agencies and organizations. Utilize DHHS grants and develop a volunteer program to assist with tracking. DENR East Coast Greenway Alliance, Friends of the Mountains to Sea Trail, local governments, DHHS, colleges and universities, private sector 9.6
EN10 Work with school system to develop environmental education trails. Dept. of Education, local school systems NCDOT, DENR 9.6
EN11 Identify a working group to discuss priority open space and trails projects that will enhance environment and promote public access. DENR, DHHS NCDOT, NC Wildlife Resources Commission 9.6
EN12 Build an environmental stewardship benefits of walking and bicycling campaign (similar to Watch for Me NC, but with an environmental/encouragement focus). NCDOT DENR 9.6
EN13 Develop a targeted data base through data sharing that identifies public lands for trails and greenways. DENR Conservation Trust for NC and its 24 land trust, DPR, NCDOT 9.6
EN14 Engage a more diverse network of non-traditional partners in North Carolina, many of which support environmental efforts, in a partnership summit to collaborate on outreach and common goals, including taking action on many of these steps. NC Center for Non-Profits NCDOT-DBPT, Healthy Environments Collaborative 9.6
Environment: Regional Greenway Trails
EN15 Build relationships and establish regular communication with trail advocates such as the East Coast Greenway Alliance, Friends of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, Carolina Thread Trail, and DENR. NCDOT-DBPT DENR, East Coast Greenway Alliance, Friends of the Mountains to Sea Trail 4
EN16 Continue utilizing prioritization criteria for bike/ped projects that are a part of a regional trail or connect to a regional trail. NCDOT-DBPT 4
EN17 Representative agencies for these regional trails should reach out to state agencies, counties, and municipalities to discuss the goals of the regional trail systems and establish partnerships for future growth and enhancement of these systems. DENR, Department of Commerce, DHHS, East Coast Greenway Alliance, Friends of the Mountains to Sea Trail NCDOT-DBPT 4
EN18 Consider optimizing the environmental benefits of greenway design to integrate the greenway into regional green infrastructure and provide more environmental services benefits. DENR, WRC, and local land trusts could assist in this design. NCDOT See list of potential stakeholders at left. 4
Environment: Red Trails Project
EN19 On a local level, involve the extensive list of stakeholders through a technical advisory committee or frequent communication via meetings, newsletters, phone calls, and e-mails, created uniquely to best fit the needs of each community and its respective stakeholders. Stakeholders may include railroad companies (including representatives of real estate, operations, maintenance, and legal departments), utility companies, law enforcement officials, other adjacent landowners, trail user groups, and North Carolina agencies including transportation, health, and parks and recreation. See list of potential stakeholders See list of potential stakeholders 4
DBPT – Division of Bicycle and Pedestrian Transportation; HSRC – Highway Safety Research Center; ITRE – Institute for Transportation Research and Education; MPO – Metropolitan Planning Organization; RPO – Rural Planning Organization; FHWA – Federal Highway Administration; HSIP – Highway Safety Improvement Program; HEC – Healthy Environments Collaborative; DHHS – Department of Health and Human Services; SRTS – Safe Routes to School; DPI – Department of Public Instruction; STEP – Small Towns Economic Prosperity Program; CTP – Comprehensive Transportation Plan; DENR – Department of Environment and Natural Resources; ADA – Americans with Disabilities Act; PROWAG – Public Rights-of-Way Accessibility Guidelines
Find out more about the 5 Pillars of the Plan