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

Mounties delayed crash clean-up, Tuesday traffic into Kelowna backed up for hours

A Tuesday traffic jam is being attributed to RCMP keeping lanes closed for a scene analysis

Central Okanagan School Board defends SOGI 123 initiative

Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity inclusivity program sparks emotional debate

Wildfire sparks near perimeter of devastating 2017 Elephant Hill fire

Ground crews and aircraft are responding to an estimated 50 hectare wildfire approximately 55 kilometers northwest of Kamloops, near the Deadman Vidette Road.

UPDATE: Rutland residents forced from home due to late night fire

Rutland Road South has been blocked off at Highway 33 while crews work to douse a fire

Okanagan Regional Library names new CEO

Don Nettleton, who has been with ORL for 24 years, takes over from Stephanie Hall

Stranded couple rescued from Mission Creek

Rescue personnel brought two people ashore from an island after their rafts were swept away.

Two-year-old found unresponsive in pool

Mission RCMP located toddler after she went missing from a local daycare

Surrey RCMP issue warning after third sexual assault this week

It is the third sexual assault since Sunday

Toronto opening 800 emergency spaces to deal with influx of refugee claimants

Beginning Thursday, Toronto will temporarily house refugee claimants and new arrivals in 400 beds in the city’s east end.

Breaking: Trump cancels summit with North Korea

Trump cancels June 12 summit with North Korea’s Kim, citing ‘tremendous anger and open hostility’ in recent statement

Rivers rising: Floods in B.C., New Brunswick a warning of what’s to come

In B.C., thousands of residents are returning to homes this week marked with red or yellow signs indicating a health inspection is necessary

North Korea demolishes nuke test site with series of blasts

North Korea has carried out what it says is the demolition of its nuclear test site in the presence of foreign journalists.

Penticton homeless campers devastated by park cleanup

Two women, in their 50s and 60s, said they felt like giving up after their only home was cleared out

Study recommends jurors receive more financial and psychological support

Federal justice committee calls for 11 policy changes to mitigate juror stress

Most Read