BUILDING THE TRAIL

THE APPOMATTOX RIVER TRAIL & PARK SYSTEM IS A DEVELOPING 25-MILE BLUEWAY-GREENWAY

The Appomattox River Trail winds through 6 communities in South Central Virginia: Chesterfield County, Dinwiddie County, Petersburg, Colonial Heights, Prince George County, and Hopewell, from the Brasfield Dam at Lake Chesdin to the confluence of the James River.  This blueway-greenway includes a network of bicycle-pedestrian paths, 16 riverside parks, 11 historical sites, 8 boat access points, and 3 marinas.  Our vision is to unify the region with coordinated wayfinding signage on water and land as we develop each section. 

We believe the Appomattox River Trail is a path to physical and mental wellness, environmental conservation, and economic prosperity for the entire Tri-Cities region of Virginia.  Designed for active transportation and outdoor recreation, the Appomattox River Trail greenway offers a diverse array of connections, linking residents and visitors to nature, rural wilderness, historic downtowns, jobs, schools, shopping, restaurants, parks, and so much more. With over 5 miles on the ground, the Trail system is already bolstering the quality of life in the Tri-Cities region. 

Guided by a Master Plan adopted in 2017, FOLAR works in collaboration with local and state government, foundations, individual donors, landowners, engineering firms, construction firms, environmental and outdoor recreation groups, nonprofit organizations, and the public to bring the vision to life.

As we develop the trail system, we measure trail usage with TRAFx infrared trail counters and semiannual volunteer trail counts. FOLAR sends that data to VDOT for their interactive Statewide Bicycle and Pedestrian Count Network map.

TRAIL SECTIONS UNDER DEVELOPMENT

TRAIL WEST | Ferndale/Appomattox Riverside Park in Dinwiddie County: FOLAR is currently fundraising to receive a $500,000 matching grant from The Cabell Foundation to fund the pre-construction engineering of the trail, park restoration, and a new bicycle-pedestrian bridge across the river to John J. Radcliffe Conservation Area in Chesterfield County. 

TRAIL CENTER | Patton Park, Old Towne Petersburg, and Pocahontas Island: This 2-mile section of the trail is shovel ready with 1/3 mile fully funded.  The Appomattox River Trail will intersect with the future Fall Line at Patton Park. 

TRAIL EAST | City of Hopewell: Phase II of the Hopewell Riverwalk’s connection to Hopewell City Marina and a network of bike lanes are under design and fully funded.  Further planning and study is being sought for the development of the section of trail through Prince George County. 

 

TRAIL FUNDING PROGRESS

The map below shows the progress made in funding the Appomattox River Trail. (Click to enlarge)

  • Completed: 5.5 miles (black)
  • Fully Funded: 4.5 miles (yellow)
  • Partially Funded: 4.5 miles (orange)
  • Not Funded: 12 miles (red)

WELLNESS

When we invest in public access to greenspace, we can improve our community’s health with a 25% increase in the number of people who exercise 3 x a week.  This is critical for the Crater Health District, which is ranked lowest in Virginia for nearly all health outcomes.

CONSERVATION

As we develop the Appomattox River Trail, we are also working with landowners to conserve riverfront land and permanently protect it.  This also protects our drinking water, biodiverse wildlife habitats, and our scenic river views.

PROSPERITY

Building a world-class trail will attract day-trippers, spark outdoor tourism, and boost spending at local businesses.  Our neighboring VA Capital Trail reported a 3.7% increase in property values along their trail.

A conceptual drawing of a bicycle-pedestrian bridge spanning the Appomattox River from the historic canal trail at Ferndale Park in Dinwiddie County to the John J. Radcliffe Conservation Area in Chesterfield County. Once funding is secured, the bridge design will be chosen by the community.

Awards & Recognition

 

Three projects along the Appomattox River Trail have received a Governor’s Environmental Excellence Award:

  • 2022, Silver Award, University Blvd Trailhead & Overlook in Petersburg
  • 2020, Gold Award, Hopewell Riverwalk
  • 2019, Bronze Award, Virginia State University Simms Hall Overlook

Our Partners