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The Wallowa Union Trail concept has the potential to create unique economic and natural resources benefits for the NE Region and for Oregon. These include, but are not limited to, enhanced recreational opportunities, expanded and promoted tourism, community development, small business stabilization and expansion, multidisciplinary education and career development opportunities, connection to and potential expansion of regional arts and cultural programs connections.
The NE Region, used here as Baker, Union and Wallowa Counties, already has a number of communities with intact historic downtown centers, an iconic working landscape defined by the area’s farms and ranches, and is distinguished by magnificent mountain ranges and river valleys. The development of rail-with-trail facilities could encourage additional interest in visiting the region, creating new opportunities for the local economy, and enhance recreation and quality of life for local residents.
This Trail Concept Report will help determine the social, political, economic, and technical viability of building a trail adjacent to the Joseph Branch Line from Elgin to Minam.