The Birth of North Carolina’s Newest State Trail
In 2015, the North Carolina General Assembly approved legislation to establish the Fonta Flora State Trail (FFST). Upon completion, the trail will extend from Morganton to Asheville, connecting Lake James, Marion, Old Fort, and Black Mountain. Destination by Design has completed three of the seven section master plans.
State Trail Master Plan, Trail Design, Construction Oversight
North Carolina State Parks, Burke County
Western North Carolina
From Plan Vision to Reality
DbD-designed trail facilities were constructed in late 2017 at the Fonta Flora State Trail County Park, signaling Burke County’s commitment to the implementation of this significant regional asset.
Broadening the Appeal of Existing Assets
From Lake James to iconic Asheville to the charming downtowns of Morganton, Marion, Black Mountain, and Old Fort, the region has no shortage of recreational and cultural amenities. By linking these assets, the FFST, a significant amenity in its own right, will further leverage mountains, waterways, and main streets which have made the region a destination for adventurers both near and far.
DbD has completed master plans for 3 of the 7 FFST planning sections, including sections 1, 2, and 3.
Connectivity & Accessibility
When fully realized, the Fonta Flora State Trail will strategically link pedestrians, hikers, and cyclists to the region’s history, culture, and scenic outdoors. By making the area’s vast array of amenities more accessible, the trail will encourage economic development throughout the region.
It was also imperative to develop a brand for the trail. Branding complements our planning work by bringing otherwise static plans to life and helping to establish an authentic sense of place.
Interactive Trail Plan Website
DbD designed an interactive website user and stakeholder engagement and project promotion.
SECTION 1: Lake James to Morganton
This section of the FFST will provide critical connectivity between the trail’s hallmark outdoor asset—Lake James—and a major population center in the area.
Read the Lake James to Morganton Section Plan.
SECTION 2: Lake James Loop
While realizing the full construction of the FFST will take years, the progress made in Burke County is a testament to the community’s commitment to making the FFST a success.
Read the Lake James Loop Section Plan.
SECTION 3: Lake James to Marion
Read the Lake James to Marion Section Plan.