David Schilg, with MEC, gives a bike demonstration outside of the sports store Saturday as part of Okanagan Rail Trail ambassadors celebration of a recent $45,000 donation. - Credit: Carli Berry/Capital News

Much to be done before Okanagan Rail Trail completion

The OKIB still has not started construction on its section of trail

Okanagan Rail Trail ambassador Brad Clement is excited the rail trail is coming together, but much has to be done before the trail’s official opening.

There are three things that still need to happen for the trail to open; it must be fully funded, work must be completed between the partners and the Agricultural Land Commission to ensure there’s no conflict between the trail and agricultural land, and the process of transferring the CN rail land from the federal government to the Okanagan Indian Band must be completed, said Clement.

He isn’t concerned the Okanagan Indian Band has not yet started construction on its section of land. The CN rail is in the middle of being transferred from the federal government to the band, so work will begin once the transfer is completed.

“The original plan actually was to build no trail until everything is in place, so the alternative is to have no section open… at least now we have some amazing areas of trail.”

Clement has been with the project for the last five years.

“It’s been a fantastic, long ride.”

Kelowna’s section of trail from Dilworth Drive to the airport is expected to be open in September. Lake Country’s trail opening has not yet been determined.

“There are some 80 properties that are in the ALC along the trail, mainly in Lake Country and Kelowna… so ALC needs to work with the farmers to minimize the conflict between trail users and agriculture production,” said Clement.

Dogs will be allowed on the trail as long as they remain on a leash. Horses will not be allowed.

Research suggests other users will not use the trail because not everyone is comfortable with horses in an urban setting, said Clement.

“I can’t go around them, I’m highly allergic,” he said.

The rail trail has only $150,000 left before it is fully funded. MEC recently donated $45,000 to the trail and a sidewalk party was held Saturday at the store’s location in Kelowna.

Wade Janzen, sustainability and investment coordinator with MEC, said the donation came from avid biking staff who pushed the idea. “This community is so active, and there’s such a community force around it we wanted to be a part of it.”

The $45,000 will go towards retrofitting the bridge between Kalamalka and Wood Lakes.

@carliberry_
carli.berry@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Okanagan Wildfires: An afternoon update on wildfires and evacuations

A Sunday afternoon look at the major wildfires impacting the Okanagan and Similkameen.

BC Wildfire holding steady on Okanagan Complex

Evening update on Okanagan fire situation

BC Wildfire merges Mt. Eneas and Munro Lake fires

Large plume of smoke seen over the fire was a controlled event

BC Games: Day 3 wrap and closing ceremonies

The torch in the Cowichan Valley has been extinguished as Fort St. John gets ready to host the 2020 BC Winter Games

Police confirm girl, 8 others injured in Toronto shooting; shooter dead

Paramedics said many of the victims in Danforth, including a child, were rushed to trauma centres

Why do they do it? Coaches guide kids to wins, personal bests at the BC Games

Behind the 2,300 B.C. athletes are the 450 coaches who dedicate time to help train, compete

Reel Reviews: Floundering inferno

We quote Charlie Brown: “Good grief!”

UPDATE: Five taken to hospital following one of two Coquihalla accidents

One airlifted in critical condition, four taken via ambulance in stable condition

Ottawa fails to find alternative buyer for Trans Mountain pipeline by deadline

The feds had announced it was purchasing the $4.5 billion pipeline earlier this spring

Government sets full-time salary range for Justin Trudeau’s nanny

At its top range, the order works out to a rate of $21.79 per hour, assuming a 40-hour work week

Lower Mainland teams battle for baseball gold at BC Games

Vancouver Coastal squeaked out a 3-2 win against Fraser Valley

The Northern Secwepemc te Qelmucw people signed an agreement-in-principle with the B.C. government

The signing ceremony, at the Eliza Archie Memorial School, was 25 years in the making

Most Read