Working with the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and National Park Service (NPS) are pleased to announce that the FONSI for the proposed Space Coast Trail at Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge (CanaveralNWR) and National Seashore is now available for public review.
The proposed shared-use path within the Merritt Island NWR and Canaveral National Seashore would serve as a key connector for Florida’s Coast-to-Coast Trail.
The Proposed Action would include:
• providing an east-west connection from Titusville to the Atlantic Ocean with the
proposed construction of a paved shared-use path from the Merritt Island NWR boundary
at Parrish Park to Parking Lot 1 within Canaveral National Seashore, connecting to the existing Coast-to-Coast Trail segment currently under construction in Titusville (east-west segment);
• providing a north-south connection with the communities of southern Volusia County
with the proposed construction of paved buffered bicycle lanes along Kennedy Parkway, North from the intersection of Playalinda Beach Road to US-1 (north-south segment);
• providing a shorter loop trail experience with the proposed construction of the
Interpretive Loop Trail as a pervious pathway with a paved section from the Merritt
Island NWR Visitor Center to the east-west segment.
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The proposed Space Coast Trail would provide opportunities for the enjoyment of appropriate and compatible outdoor recreation; promote awareness and appreciation of natural resources; and protect, conserve, and manage wildlife, habitat, and cultural resources for the benefit of present and future generations, while also meeting NASA operational and security requirements.
In accordance with FWS and NPS guidelines and National Environmental Policy Act requirements, public involvement is an important factor in the development and review of the proposal. The Service
initiated public scoping in August 2016. A public meeting open house was conducted on December 7, 2017 at the City of Titusville City Hall to obtain feedback from the public on the proposal, alternative alignments , and potential benefits and impacts. Those scoping comments helped inform the
development of an Environmental Assessment (EA) for the proposed Space Coast Trail that was posted for a 30-day public comment period that ended on October 21, 2019