Trails Benefits Library

This Trails Benefits Library is a collection of studies on the positive impacts of trails on businesses, public health, and quality of life. Use this form to search by type of benefit, use, year, and region.

Find trails studies by:

Benefit

Use

Year

Region

Studies found (6) for 2016:

Association Between User-Generated Commuting Data and Population-Representative Active Commuting Surveillance Data—Four Cities, 2014-2015

→Summary & Interpretation

Year:
Benefits studied:
Uses studied:
Overview: One of the primary concerns about data from GPS tracking apps is that the users tend to be more frequent recreators or commuters and therefore do not accurately represent the actual population. This paper shows that there is a strong correlation between the reported share of people in a neighborhood commuting by active transportation between the American Community Survey (a nationally representative survey) and Strava (a GPS tracking app).
Region: ,
Place: Austin, Texas; Denver, Colorado; Nashville, Tennessee; and San Francisco, California
Citation: Whitfield, G.P. 2016. Association Between User-Generated Commuting Data and Population-Representative Active Commuting Surveillance Data—Four Cities, 2014–2015. CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report 65(36): 959-962.

Behavioral Effects of Completing a Critical Link in the American Tobacco Trail

→Summary & Interpretation

Year:
Benefits studied:
Uses studied: ,
Overview: In Durham, North Carolina, a bicycle-pedestrian bridge was built to connect two previously separate segments of a regional trail, leading to a 133 percent increase in trail use after its construction. This new connection allows the researchers to demonstrate a substantial increase in physical activity attributable to the bridge, with significant public health benefits for trail users.
Region:
Place: Durham
Citation: Cook, T., S. O’Brien, K. Jackson, D. Findley, and S. Searcy. 2016. “Behavioral effects of completing a critical link in the American Tobacco Trail.” Transportation Research Record 2598: 19–26.

Bonner County Trails Final Survey Results

→Summary & Interpretation

Year:
Benefits studied:
Overview: In rural Bonner County in northern Idaho, trails are used by three-quarters of residents an average of every day in the summer and every other day in the winter. Trail use is high for all residents, even accounting for differences in the length of residence in the county, income, and age. Business owners are more likely to identify trails as an important factor in their decision to move to the county.
Region:
States:
Place: Bonner County
Citation: RRC Associates. 2016. Bonner County Trails Final Survey Results. Bozeman, MT: Headwaters Economics.

Determinants of Demand for Recreational Walking Trails in Ireland

→Summary & Interpretation

Year:
Benefits studied:
Uses studied:
Overview: Visitors to walking trails in rural Ireland are likely to spend more to visit flat or valley trails, as well as trails that have signage and maps. The authors use the results to evaluate a set of proposed trails to identify those most likely to bring the most visitors and generate the greatest economic impact.
Region:
States:
Place: County Galway
Citation: Kelley, H., T. M. van Rensburg, and N. Jeserich. 2016. "Determinants of demand for recreational walking trails in Ireland." Tourism Management 52: 173-186.

Enchanted Circle Trails: Final Survey Results

→Summary & Interpretation

Year:
Benefits studied: , ,
Overview: In Taos, New Mexico, Hispanic residents and low-income residents are less likely to have used trails during the previous year, but those who have used trails during the previous year use them just as often as other (non-Hispanic) residents. Among low-income residents, those with a park or trail within a 10-minute walk of their house were 50 percent more likely to have used trails during the previous year.
Region:
States:
Place: Taos County
Citation: RRC Associates. 2016. Enchanted Circle Trails: Final Survey Results. Prepared for Taos Land Trust; Headwaters Economics. Boulder, CO: RRC Associates.

Reducing Childhood Obesity Through Coordinated Care: Development of a Park Prescription Program

→Summary & Interpretation

Year:
Benefits studied:
Uses studied:
Overview: In Miami-Dade County, Florida, researchers evaluated the structure of a pilot project connecting children, families, and their pediatricians to a park-based afterschool program. This study describes important factors encouraging ongoing support from participating families and pediatricians, as well as ways to measure the effectiveness of prescription parks programs.
Region:
States:
Place: Miami-Dade County
Citation: Messiah, S.E., Jiang, S., Kardys, J., Hansen, E., Nardi, M. and Forster, L., 2016. Reducing childhood obesity through coordinated care: Development of a park prescription program. World Journal of Clinical Pediatrics 5(3): 234.