ATV trails are critical because they:
- Provide ATV riders with established riding areas;
- Help boost local economies through increased ATV-related tourism
- Improve enforcement capabilities through an increase in ATV-designated trails
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Provide a safe and sustainable form of outdoor recreation for individuals and families
There are currently 910 miles of ATV-designated trails in Minnesota, as compared to 20,000 miles of designated snowmobile trails.
Economic Development
Minnesota is presently at a competitive disadvantage when compared to other regional ATV markets due to the state’s low number of designated ATV trails. Only through a sustained effort to develop a designated trail system will Minnesota close this gap.
- Wisconsin has more than 5,704 miles of designated ATV trails as compared to 910 miles in Minnesota. Wisconsin’s trail system pulls ATV riders from Minnesota who would otherwise be contributing to Minnesota’s local economies.
- A March 2004 Wisconsin Department of Tourism research report cites that of Wisconsin’s 14.1% of non-resident ATV riders, 6% come from Minnesota. Non-resident ATV riders contribute a total annual spending of $34.7 million in Wisconsin – this means that on average Minnesota’s ATV riders are spending $14.8 million annually in Wisconsin.
- Minnesota competes with Wisconsin and other regional markets in attracting ATV riders and boosting local economies.
ATV riders support local economies by staying at local hotels, eating at local restaurants, and creating an increased demand – and therefore increased job opportunities – for these and other services.
ATV riders also support Minnesota’s two major ATV manufacturers, Polaris and Arctic Cat, along with hundreds of ATV dealers and after-market accessory suppliers.
Future Vision: Benefits of an ATV-Designated Trail System
An ATV-designated trail system across the state would create structured and sustainable riding opportunities in Minnesota.
- For example, regional trail systems would allow for unique riding experiences in different parts of the state.
Using multi-purpose trails whenever possible would create additional riding opportunities with minimal impact on our natural resources.
An increase in grant-in-aid opportunities would bring riders and local communities together to partner in establishing and maintaining ATV trails.
Local communities on or near a state or grant-in-aid trail system benefit from increased traffic to their businesses, job opportunities, and overall economic development.