Master plan being prepared for Okanagan Rail Trail

Master plan being prepared for Okanagan Rail Trail

The plan will enhance the user experience, while also protecting the natural environment.

A master plan for the Okanagan Rail Trail is currently being developed to ensure a balanced approach is taken when it comes to promoting recreational opportunities and protecting the environment.

Matt Vader, a member of the Okanagan Rail Trail committee, said the master plan will help enhance the user experience by improving facilities along the route, while also protecting the natural environment.

“A huge key is the protection of the natural environment,” said Vader, during a council meeting Tuesday night with the District of Lake Country.

“We’re not going to go put concrete structures along the lakeside. We’re looking to enhance it, not impede that.”

While the master plan is still in its infancy, he said it will likely include additional enhancements such as new parks, trail heads and parking lots.

“We’re trying to keep this collaborative with all the regional partners,” said Vader. “It’s super important to each partner to work together and recognize the Okanagan Rail Trail as a regional asset not just in Kelowna or Lake Country. We’re all working to make this better for the whole region.”

Once the master plan is finalized, he said it will also recognize the cultural and historical values of the region, including heritage sites and traditional uses by First Nations such as planting Indigenous grass and potentially building a cultural centre similar to the cultural centre in Woodsdale that will teach people about the former rail line.

Since Nov. 5, the rail trail committee has been working diligently to continue to improve the quality of the trail, including installing way-finding signage, creating an event management policy as well as a new logo.

“We’ve put in an event management policy which was approved by all the councils and board of the area to balance recreation and local use with the events that are very popular on the trail going from Coldstream to Kelowna,” said Vader.

“We undertook a branding exercise which is where our logo came from. There is a new website being developed that will be coming out in the next couple of months that does highlight the culture and history of the area, with some planning and interpretive maps and online mapping.”

For more information about the trail visit www.okanaganrailtrail.ca.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Flooding has become a reality for many communities in the Okanagan Valley as the region faces more extreme weather storms, blamed on the impact of climate change. (File photo)
Okanagan high target for spring flooding

Higher snowpack and mild winter precipitation levels raise concerns for Canada’s insurance industry

Interior Health reported 79 new cases of COVID-19 and two new death in the region Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (Ben Hohenstatt/Juneau Empire)
79 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths reported in Interior Health

Both of Friday’s deaths were both recorded at long-term care homes

Veteran Henry Kriwokon has his photo taken by the Western as he celebrates his 99th birthday with friends at the Cellar in Downtown Penticton. (Brennan Phillips - Penticton Western News)
Turning 101, Penticton veteran looks back on life

Henry Kriwokon was one of the soldiers in the famous ‘Wait for me, Daddy’ photo

Stock photo from Unsplash.com
Study: Embrace national long-term care standards

Call to direct public funding only to public and non-profit long-term care providers

Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021 is International Lego Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Jan. 24 to 30

Lego Day, Talk Like a Grizzled Prospector Day and Puzzle Day are all coming up this week

Economic Development and Official Languages Minister Melanie Joly responds to a question in the House of Commons Monday November 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Federal minister touts need for new B.C. economic development agency

Last December’s federal economic update promised a stimulus package of about $100 billion this year

FILE - In this Nov. 20, 2017, file photo, Larry King attends the 45th International Emmy Awards at the New York Hilton, in New York. Former CNN talk show host King has been hospitalized with COVID-19 for more than a week, the news channel reported Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021. CNN reported the 87-year-old King contracted the coronavirus and was undergoing treatment at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. (Photo by Andy Kropa/Invision/AP, File)
Larry King, broadcasting giant for half-century, dies at 87

King conducted an estimated 50,000 on-air interviews

BC Coroners Service is currently investigating a death at Canoe Cove Marina and Boatyard in North Saanich. (Black Press Media File)
Drowning death in North Saanich likely B.C.’s first in for 2021

Investigation into suspected drowning Monday night continues

Kimberly Proctor, 18, was murdered in 2010. Her family has spent many of the years since pushing for a law in her honour, that they say would help to prevent similar tragedies. (Courtesy of Jo-Anne Landolt)
Proposed law honouring murdered B.C. teen at a standstill, lacks government support

Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions has concerns with involuntary detainment portion of act

Sunnybank in Oliver. (Google Maps)
Sunnybank long-term care in Oliver reports third COVID-19 death

The facility currently has an outbreak with 35 cases attached to it

Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam speaks during a daily briefing in Ottawa. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld)
31 cases of COVID-19 variants detected in Canada: Health officials

Dr. Theresa Tam made announces 13 more variant COVID-19 cases in Canada

Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops. (Dave Eagles/Kamloops This Week file photo)
COVID-19 outbreak declared at Kamloops’ Royal Inland Hospital surgical unit

Despite 6 South being a surgical unit, RIH said surgeries are continuing at the hospital

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read