HISTORY OF THE KATY TRAIL
What was once an abandoned railroad line is now one of the most iconic destinations in Dallas: the Katy Trail. The popular trail brings over one million visitors every year to enjoy beautiful scenery, well-maintained paths, and the splendor of the city. On top of being the premier destination for jogging, biking, skating, and walking in the city, the Katy Trail also hosts exciting events, including the annual Michelob Ultra Katy Trail 5K. Residents and visitors alike take advantage of the 30-acre park, as well as 125 acres of urban parkland connected by the pedestrian and bike trails.
The Katy Trail as most locals know it began in 2000, but the history of the Katy Trail stretches back nearly a hundred years to the age of railroads. Union Pacific Railroad built the Missouri-Kansas-Texas Railroad and established the network in 1865 as the Southern Branch. The route was also commonly called the K-T, and eventually the Katy. After the heyday of railroad, Union Pacific eventually donated the abandoned lines to the city of Dallas in 1993. The initial plan for the historic Katy rail line was to use it as part of the DART line; however, in the 1990s, a group of passionate individuals and local businesses proposed that the line be converted into the beautiful greenbelt you see today.
To maintain the Katy Trail, the local community started The Friends of the Katy Trail to ensure that residents and visitors can continue to use the trail for years and years to come. Thanks to the continued support of locals and businesses, The Friends of the Katy Trail is able to keep the Trail running in peak condition for the community to enjoy.