New Orleans, Louisiana

Lacing the Boot: Safe Connections for Recreation, Transportation and Tourism

Tammany Trace | Photo courtesy St. Tammany Parish

Project Spotlight: Louisiana Bootlace Trail Network

Through the developing Louisiana Bootlace Trail Network, New Orleans is collaborating with a diverse range of partners to create a seamless walking and biking network for recreation, transportation and tourism that stretches over 100 miles, from Baton Rouge—the state capital—to the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

By linking existing and future trails and greenways together, the partners seek to expand on past efforts to develop and connect their pedestrian and bicycle networks and link the area’s diverse communities—ensuring safer access to critical destinations for households without vehicles (20.2 percent in the city in 2016), and improving mobility for people of all ages and abilities throughout the region.

Louisiana is often referred to as the “Boot-Shaped State,” and New Orleans’ trail development efforts include connecting communities large and small—by land and alongside water—beginning at the “toe” of the “boot.” Projects such as the 1.5-mile expansion of the 27-mile Tammany Trace and the creation of the 11-mile St. Bernard Parish bike trail will help create safer routes to schools, employment centers, shopping areas, and parks and recreation facilities—and deeper connections to the area’s rich historical, cultural and natural offerings.

The Louisiana Bootlace Trail Network will also focus on the creation of safe and convenient last-mile connections from trailheads to front doors—thereby improving walkability and bikeability throughout the trail network footprint, and spurring active transportation.

Tammany Trace Voted 2017 Rail-Trail Hall of Fame Inductee

In July 2017, through a national voting competition, Louisiana’s Tammany Trace became the first rail-trail in the state inducted into Rails-to-Trails Conservancy’s national Rail-Trail Hall of Fame.

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Louisiana Bootlace Trail Network map | Courtesy RTC
Louisiana Bootlace Trail Network map | Courtesy RTC

Facts and Figures

PartnersNew Orleans Regional Planning Commission, Friends of Lafitte Greenway, Bike Easy, City of New Orleans

Featured Project: Louisiana Bootlace Trail Network

Mileage: 100+ (regional)

Trails: Mississippi River Trail (Levee Top Trail), Tammany Trace, Lafitte Greenway, Jefferson Parish Lakefront Trail, Ward Creek Trail, Baton Rouge Downtown Greenway, St. Bernard Parish bike trail, 40 Arpent Trail, Manchac Greenway

Goals: Recreation, active transportation, tourism, connections to nature, safe opportunities for biking and walking

Learn More: The Times-Picayune Article on the Tammany Trace Extension | The Times-Picayune Article on the Lafitte Greenway | History of the Lafitte Corridor | WAFB Coverage of 10-Mile Trail in East Baton Rouge | The New Orleans Advocate Article on the St. Bernard Parish Bike Trail | Explore New Orleans on TrailLink

Much of the Tammany Trace is wooded | Photo courtesy St. Tammany Parish
Much of the Tammany Trace is wooded | Photo courtesy St. Tammany Parish

Trail of the Month: Louisiana’s Tammany Trace

TrailBlog, August 2016

The Tammany Trace is a Southern belle nestled in the pristine natural surroundings of the Northshore across a vast lake from vibrant New Orleans. Spanning 27 miles, the paved pathway crosses a number of small creeks and bayous on more than two dozen bridges, connecting five quaint towns—Covington, Abita Springs, Mandeville, Lacombe and Slidell—each with their own unique character and appeal.

By Laura Stark

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Trailblog Features

July 2021

Close Ties: Louisiana Bootlace Trail Network

by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy
July 2017

Louisiana's Tammany Trace Voted 2017 Rail-Trail Hall of Fame Inductee

by Rails-to-Trails Conservancy