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Friends of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks has received a $33,000 grant from the Outdoor Recreation Division (ORD) of the Economic Development Department (EDD), EDD said in a news release.
“The project will pave a section of the La Cueva Trail from the Dripping Springs visitor center, the most popular area for visitors to Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument,” the news release said. “The paving of the trail will make access for those in wheelchairs and with limited mobility. It will be the only trail of its kind within the monument. Close to three-quarters of a mile will be paved, including pullouts for wildlife and scenery viewing. This is a joint project between the Friends of Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks and the local Bureau of Land Management office.”
The project was one of 15 to receive ORD funding, which is investing $2.74 million in first-round outdoor recreation projects to expand access to the outdoors and grow the outdoor industry throughout New Mexico, EDD said.
The governor and lawmakers created the Outdoor Recreation Trails+ in 2019 to support projects that enhance communities’ outdoor recreation opportunities. Trails, river parks, wildlife viewing areas, and more contribute to economic development, prosperity and wellness.
On March 1, Trails+ opened on a rolling basis with $7 million in federal American Rescue Plan Act funding, which was appropriated in the 2021 December special session. This investment enables ORD to broaden the scope and ambition of the grant, with local awards of up to $99,999 and regional awards up to $500,000.