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NorthEast Texas Trail (NETT) Coalition is the product of the commitment and partnership among local and statewide trail advocates, and county, state and federal government agencies.
Over the course of a 6 year effort, the NETT Coalition mission has been “re-cycling” an invaluable rail banked corridor into pedestrian, bicycle, and equestrian trails (equestrians not allowed in certain municipals) for moving people through the picturesque countryside of Northeast Texas.
It traverses from Farmersville (East Dallas) through 19 rural towns and 7 counties to New Boston (West Texarkana) linking population centers, community facilities, work places, neighborhoods, schools, recreation areas, open space and cultural/historical areas.
The NETT Coalition is committed to organize the public and policy-makers to create a comprehensive system of trails, parks and protected natural areas as a vital component in the region’s economy and quality of life.
The infrastructure for the NETT was made possible by the creation of the 1983 Federal Law called the National Trail Acts and the Rail Banking process.
Rail banking is when a railroad company voluntarily sells, donates, or leases unprofitable or unwanted rail lines and tracks to a qualified public or private entity (the Rail bank entity).
Via this Law, land for construction of the NETT project is provided at no cost.
In the late 1990’s, 2 railroads, the Union Pacific and the Chaparral decided to cease active service and publicized their railroad corridors availability for rail banking through the Surface Transportation Board of the United States Department of Transportation (STB).
3-private agencies Rails to Trails Conservancy (RTC) 1997, Greater Paris Development Foundation (GPDF) 1996, and Chaparral Rails to Trails Inc. (CRT) 1995 realizing that this will be an investment with a great rate of return that will richly enhance the quality of life in Texas applied for and became rail bank entities: RTC from New Boston to Clarksville, GPDF from Clarksville to Paris, Chaparral from Paris to Farmersville.
When completed the Northeast Texas Trail will be the longest Hike/Bike and Equestrian Trail in Texas
and the 5th longest in the U.S.A.
True Trail Adage
The longer the trail is,
the further people will come to use it,
the longer they will stay in the area,
and the more money they will spend!