The Boone Trace project is a long-term, multi-county plan that will encourage tourism in the area and promote positive health outcomes. Boone Trace was the historic road that Daniel Boone was contracted to construct into the new western frontier from Virginia through Cumberland Gap. Boone trace is distinct from the Warrior’s Path and the later constructed Wilderness Road. The Trace begins in Virginia and then crosses five Kentucky counties—Bell, Knox, Laurel, Rockcastle and Madison –to its northern end at Boonesborough on the Kentucky River. The route roughly parallels US 25, I-75 and the CSX railroad from Corbin to the Kentucky River. The vision for the Boone Trace is three forms: a driving route that parallels the historic road, a road cycling route for those who want a slower and more connected experience on the Trace, and overland trail segments of the historic route where feasible to connect between the portions which have been obscured by modern development.
A comparable trail, The Great Alleghany Passage in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, to Cumberland, Maryland, is 150 miles in length and connects to the C&O Canal Towpath which continues on to Washington D.C. The Great Alleghany Passage cost $80 million to build and according to 2009 numbers generates $41 million annually and resulted in 55 new or expanded businesses and 200 new jobs.
The Boone Trace project will not cost as much to build as The Great Alleghany Passage but could have a similar Return on Investment.
A recent meeting at the Bluegrass Area Development District in Lexington involved Representatives from the City of Richmond, City of Berea Mayor Steve Connelly, SOAR Executive Director Jared Arnett, Bluegrass Area Development District Director David Duttlinger, Entrepreneurship for the Public Good Program Director Peter Hackbert, Ph.,D., and Dr John M. Fox, President, Friends of Boone Trace, Inc. Chris Chaney, Planner, with the Bluegrass Area Development District, states, “Boone Trace has the potential to connect the communities along the proposed route for the mutual benefit of tourism development, improved health outcomes, and a better quality of life for residents along the Trace and visitors to the region.”
For more information about the Daniel Boone Trace Plan see http://www.boonetrace1775.com