A state environmental agency has awarded more than $8 million to create a network of trails in the Charlotte region and protect nationally-recognized Wilson Creek in Caldwell County.
The Clean Water Management Trust Fund said today it has granted $3 million to the Carolina Thread Trail, an ambitious project to link greenways, trails and open space across 15 counties in the Charlotte region.
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The grant to the Catawba Lands Conservancy, which administers the initiative, will be used to buy land in Mecklenburg and Gaston counties.
More than 800 acres along Wilson Creek, a National Wild and Scenic River in Caldwell County, will be protected with $5.5 million in trust-fund grants to Foothills Conservancy of North Carolina. The creek has been threatened by development.
One $4.8 million grant will buy 649 acres that is the largest privately-owned but unprotected tract within the creek's watershed. A second $693,000 grant will buy an easement protecting 170 acres along the creek.