What is Ozark Greenways?
Our mission is "to preserve and enhance the Ozarks' natural heritage."
Formed in 1991, Ozark Greenways is a 501c3 non-profit group of private citizens in greater Springfield, Missouri, working to preserve the Ozarks' natural heritage for public use and enjoyment through the development of a comprehensive public greenway trail network. The greenway trails are fun, free and conveniently located. When each trail section is built in Greene County, it becomes part of the Springfield-Greene County Park Board's wonderful city park system. We also help to promote Public Works' growing on-street bike route system as part of our mutual goal to create an even more bicycle-pedestrian-friendly community. Our collaborative efforts are paying off, as Springfield has been designated a bronze level Bicycle-Friendly Community by the League of American Bicylists!
Greenway trails (also called "linear parks") are preserved ribbons of nature throughout the community, typically along stream corridors or abandoned railroad right-of-ways. These hard-surfaced paths have minimal grade and provide free public access for non-motorized uses; bicycling, walking, running, skating and wheelchairs.
We are a "public-private partnership" working closely with private supporters and governmental agencies to make Springfield's greenway network a reality. Planning, fundraising, advocacy, easement acquisition, promotion and urban forestry are all activities of OG. The organization relies heavily on its citizen base of members who donate annually. We encourage you to become a member too, if you're not already!
There are many benefits to planning a bicycle-friendly community. We believe that a full network of greenways could help solve many of our society's problems, by addressing the obesity epidemic and other costly public health issues, providing family-oriented recreation opportunities, filtering pollution out of our air and water, protecting property from flooding, providing safe alternative transportation routes, reducing traffic congestion, raising property value, increasing quality of life and so on and so on! Can you think of more benefits? (Urban wildlife habitat, outdoor classrooms...)
To support a bicycle-pedestrian-friendly Springfield, become a member of Ozark Greenways by donating through this website, by volunteering for one of our committees or activities throughout the year, and by leaving your car behind once in a while by using the trails and on-street route network on a regular basis.
Vision 20/20 Plan (Updated as 'Field Guide 2030')
Ozark Greenways uses the "Parks, Open Space and Greenways" element of the Vision 20/20 plan, that was first developed through citizen committees in 1996, as its guide for developing our community's greenway trail network. The plan was updated and renamed, Field Guide 2030. The goal of the overall plan is to guide our community's development into the future, preserving a comprehensive network of greenways and routes in order to create bicycle-pedestrian-friendly Springfield.
Ozark Greenways funds its projects and operations through a combination of sources including local, state, federal and private grants, in-kind matching contributions, membership donations, business contributions, special event proceeds, sponsors, workplace giving and an endowment fund through the Community Foundation of the Ozarks.