Resources for Businesses

York County Trail Towns Façade Grant & York County Land Bank Authority Blight Removal Grant Program

The York County Trail Towns Program and York County Land Bank Authority are rolling out a join Façade Grant Blight removal program. Applicants will be eligible to apply for two grants, with a single application for funding via both grants. Applicants need only apply once to be considered for both opportunities.

York County Trail Towns Façade Grant

  • Eligible Applicants: Property Owners within specified ‘Main Street’ district section of the York County Trail Towns and officially designated Trail-Friendly Businesses.
  • Key Dates:
      • Application Window: Monday, April 1 to Monday, May 13
  • Grant Amount: Up to $10,000.
  • Eligible Use: Improvements to street-facing facades (see the guidelines for full information).
  • Match Requirement: Dollar for Dollar Match which may include funding from the York County Land Bank Authority Blight Removal Grant, or other grants administered by YCEA.
  • Webinar Recording
  • Webinar Slides


York County Land Bank Authority Blight Removal Grant

  • Eligible Applicants: Property Owners within specified ‘Main Street’ district section of the York County Trail Towns and officially designated Trail-Friendly Businesses.
  • Key Dates:
      • Application Window: Monday, April 1 to Monday, May 13
  • Grant Amount: Up to $10,000. (Please note that funding is in addition to the up to 10,000 available via the York County Trail Towns Façade Grant).
  • Eligible Use: Improvements to the property by removal of blighted conditions
  • Match Requirement: None (can be used as match for the York County Trail Towns Façade Grant)


Please direct any questions that you have regarding this grant program by emailing Brendan Salyards, or by calling the York County Economic Alliance Office, 717.848.400

Trail Towns Business Networking Groups

Rail Trail Towns Business Networking Group:

This networking group focused on businesses from New Freedom, Railroad, Glen Rock, and Seven Valleys meets at 8:30 AM on the second Tuesday of the month to coordinate events, share best-practices, and discuss timely developments

Susquehanna Holiday Trail:

Composed of 12 businesses Stretching from the Hallam area to Wrightsville, and down the Susquehanna Riverfront, this group organizes an annual event to encourage passport-participants to visit all of the member businesses.

Webinar Series 

2021 Virtual Workshop Series:

2020 Virtual Workshop Series:

Economic Benefits of Trails

Economic Benefits

There has been extensive research and study on various aspects of the economic impacts of multi-use trails; notable among them is the Rails to Trails Conservancy (RTC) work, RTC has undertaken numerous studies and created a model for assessing spending patterns of trail users.

The RTC studies break trail user spending into three categories: “soft goods” (typically food or drink), “hard good” (bike parts, clothing, shoes, etc.) and lodging. Based on the 11 trails reviewed, over 67 % of respondents purchased soft goods while on the trail averaging $19.75 per trip; the Pine Creek Trail in north-central Pennsylvania saw the largest average in “soft goods” expenditure of over $38 per trip. The “hard goods” category had a larger percentage of respondents, with 82% of respondents buying hard goods related to the trail representing an average of $417.82 per user per year.

Reported spending on lodgings is modest because of most trails didn’t experience many overnight stays but across the 11 trails, 9% of respondents paid for overnight lodging near or along the trail with an average spend of nearly $100. It is assumed that a significant percentage of users stayed in campgrounds, lowering the average spending amount in this category.

Employee Recruitment and Retention
Recent research and media reports highlight the importance of quality of place and quality of life for employee recruitment and retention alike. It is also an important consideration for new business recruitment and existing business expansion. On a broader scale, the availability of trails is seen as a key influencer in people’s decision to select a community to live.


Business Recruitment
A 2003 study by researchers at the University of North Carolina found through a literature review that quality of life is an increasingly important consideration in determining business location. Most economists regard the quality of place/quality of life as influencing business locations indirectly, through the preference of workers. Workers prefer places where they expect to enjoy a high quality of life that embraces sociability, recreation, and alternative lifestyles.

Health & Wellness Benefits

Pennsylvania has the 24th highest adult obesity rate in the nation, and the 14th highest obesity rate for youth ages 10 to 17 a clear indication that Pennsylvanians (and Americans in general) don’t engage in physical activity as much as we should. In fact, only 50% of …


A rail trail, with its easy-to-cycle grades and off-road character, is an excellent transportation option with several transportation-specific benefits. As a transportation corridor, the trail provides accessible and safe routes for people to use for work trips or errands, trips to community facilities like …


Rail trails are linear greenspaces with all the expected and traditional conservation benefits of open space. They help preserve important natural landscapes, provide needed links to create wildlife corridors between fragmented habitats and offer important …


Rail trails also represent an opportunity to celebrate the heritage and history of towns located on the trail. The preservation and restoration of historic buildings and other man-made structures (like rail tunnels, bridges, etc.) can enhance a community’s …


Expanding on the theme of the improved community identity and civic pride is social capital. Social capital is the effective functioning of social groups in a place through interpersonal relationships, a shared sense of identity, and a shared understanding that leads to a positive product, benefits, or …


Trails of all kinds offer layers of benefits, an often overlooked one is the opportunity to educate its users. Providing signage, programs or events that present information about natural resources, the history of the area, or cultural resources along the trail or a specific site enriches the personal …

Want To Learn More?

Contact email us to learn more and get involved. 

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