Lake Country signs on to rail trail development

On Tuesday, Lake Country council voted to join an inter-jurisdictional development team

Communities continue to embrace the process to establish a recreational corridor from Kelowna to Coldstream.

On Tuesday, Lake Country council voted to join an inter-jurisdictional development team that will plan, design, finance, develop and maintain a trail along the former Canadian National track.

“We want to make sure we are partners so we have a say and a share of the cost,” said Mayor James Baker.

Kelowna has already signed on to the team, and it’s anticipated that the Regional District of North Okanagan will also join.

The jurisdictions spent $22 million to purchase the corridor.

CN has until 2017 to complete track removal and environmental site remediation and local jurisdictions have stated that before work begins on the trail, there will be a planning process, cost estimates and development phasing.

Baker says that actual construction of the trail will depend on the financial capabilities of Lake Country and the other jurisdictions, but he is confident about the process.

“I am pleased to see a collaborative manner so we’re not at logger-heads about how it develops.”

Funding options for the trail include community fundraising and senior government grants.