Collinsville, Ill., Nov. 21, 2012 … The Metro East Park and Recreation District (MEPRD) is pleased to announce it recently awarded $821,346 in grant funding throughout Madison and St. Clair Counties in Illinois. The collective cost of the nine projects will translate into a $9,102,386 investment in the local community. Funds were made available through MERPD’s FY13 Park and Trail Grant Matching Program created to help develop parks, greenways and trails throughout the bi-county area.

St. Clair County Transit District was among the grantees, receiving $100,000 to extend the MetroBikeLink Trail to Wingate Subdivision by adding a new pedestrian bridge crossing over IL Route 161. The bridge will provide safe accessibility to the 400 pedestrians who currently cross over the five lane roadway on a daily basis near Southwestern Illinois College to access the educational facility, YMCA and shopping district. Madison County Transit District was awarded $300,000 for the MCT Heritage – Ronald J. Foster Bikeway project that will provide asphalt surfacing, new signage and rehabilitation of 12 bridges and tunnels along an 8-mile stretch of trail. The Village of Godfrey received $105,000 for an open air shelter, ADA compliant restroom facility and a 10-foot wide asphalt trail at Glazebrook Park.

The following fund totals were also awarded as part of MERPD’s FY13 Park and Trail Grant Matching Program:

  • $68,900 for the Glidden Park Tennis Courts project in Collinsville
  • $10,251 for the Jones Park Walking Trail project in East St. Louis
  • $35,756 for the Hough Park Improvements project in Belleville
  • $101,600 for the College Road Bike and Pedestrian Trail project in Lebanon
  • $83,339 for the Three Springs Park Lake Trail project in Shiloh
  • $16,500 for the Hesse Park Pickle Ball Courts project in O’Fallon

“We are excited to be part of the projects underway to make the bi-county area an even better place to live, work and raise healthy, active citizens,” commented Mike Buehlhorn, executive director of the Metro East Park and Recreation District. “Guided by our mission, MEPRD is thankful to be able to help play a fundamental role in the development of local parks, greenways and trails."

All Park and Trail Grant Matching applications received by MEPRD for FY13 were awarded funding. The projects were eligible for up to 25 percent of the total project cost or $300,000, whichever was less. Grant funds will be paid out only after the funded project is 100 percent complete. All funded projects are physically located within Madison or St. Clair Counties in Illinois. No project or project sponsor received more than one Park and Trail Grant during this fiscal year from MEPRD. In FY12, $852,000 was granted to support nine projects in Madison and St. Clair Counties for an additional community investment of $4,898,864.


To learn more about MEPRD’s Park and Trail Grant Matching Program visit The website also offers access to new, comprehensive, park and trail maps detailing a wide range of useful information for walkers, joggers, bikers and bladers looking to utilize any of the parks and trails throughout Madison and St. Clair Counties.


The Metro East Park and Recreation District (MEPRD) was formed by voters in November 2000, and is responsible for the development of parks, greenways, and trails in Madison county and St. Clair County, Illinois. The District often supplements the efforts of local governments, special districts, and other jurisdictions already engaged in the management of parks and recreation facilities. The park district is the first of its kind in Illinois, serving over half a million residents. To learn more, call 618-346-4905, visit or find them on Facebook. 

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