Exciting stuff! The Kaien Island Trail Enhancement and Recreation Society, in partnership with the City of Prince Rupert, is starting construction on Part 1 of the Cloudberry Trail, a multi-use pathway that will connect the Jim Ciccone Civic Centre with the Galloway Rapids Rest Area (Port Ed Turn-off).
What is a multi-use pathway?
A multi-use pathway (MUP) is an off-street pathway that is physically separated from motor vehicle traffic intended for use by non-motorized users (ie. walkers, joggers, bicyclists, those with unique mobilities). In the case of the Cloudberry Trail Multi-Use pathway, portions of the MUP will be located next to the highway, while other portions with pass through our natural surroundings, providing safe and accessible access to current and future outdoor recreation opportunities, like the Butze Rapids Trail, future downhill mountain biking and Oliver Lake Picnic Area. The Cloudberry Trail MUP will be designed for walkers, cyclists, and those using mobility devices, travelling in both directions, providing sufficient space for different users to safely use the MUP together.
In addition, the Cloudberry Trail MUP will provide a future connection to the Ridley Island Road should those working at industrial facilities on Ridley Island wish to use active transportation modes to access their workplace.
Who is the Kaien Island Trail Enhancement and Recreation Society (Kaien Trails)?
Kaien Trails is a local non-profit society that is governed by a working board of directors. The society has no paid employees and achieves their goals entirely through volunteer hours – by the board and local community. Kaien Trails is focused on providing safe and accessible access to outdoor recreation opportunities by establishing a network of multi-use pathways on Kaien Island.
Why is a local society leading a multi-use pathway project instead of the City?
Outdoor recreation, active transportation, and creating a safe and accessible place to live, work and play is important for a healthy community. Kaien Trails’ recognizes that to create more accessibility to outdoor recreation, the community needs physical infrastructure like multi-use pathways.
Due to the state of essential infrastructure in Prince Rupert, like our aging water system, lack of wastewater treatment, and housing shortage, we all need to come together as a community to support the growth we want to see. Kaien Trails saw this need and came together in 2017 to fill this gap and planning and delivery of outdoor recreation and the creation of a multi-use pathway network.
In the future, once the community is on a solid footing with its essential infrastructure, the City of Prince Rupert may be able to take a more active role in developing and maintaining a MUP network. But for now, Kaien Trails is taking the lead as this is an asset we believe is valuable to people that call Prince Rupert home and those coming here to visit.
How does this project align with the City’s Transportation Plan and Prince Rupert 2030 Vision?
Great question! In 2017, Kaien Trails engaged a consultant to develop a Master Trail Plan, a planning document that outlines a vision for a multi-use pathway network. Over the past seven years, this vision has been incorporated into other community plans, including the Prince Rupert 2030 Vision and most recently, the Council adopted Prince Rupert Transportation Plan.
With the Cloudberry Trail MUP an official part of the City’s Transportation Plan, it provides an ability of Kaien Trails and the City to access grants and other funding for future pathway construction, and communicates the community’s buy-in to the project based on the engagement completed while preparing those planning documents.
When is the expected completion date?
Construction of Part 1 of the Cloudberry Trail MUP is scheduled for the end of March 2024. As the project nears completion, Kaien Trails will provide an official opening date for the public to start using the pathway.
Can I get involved with this project?
Absolutely! Join Kaien Trails’ email list, or like us on social media to stay attuned to upcoming volunteer days. In January, we hosted a volunteer day to clear some of the trees along the future pathway, providing free firewood to the community. There will be future volunteer days in February and March (weather permitting) to support the construction of the pathway.
Are there other ways I can support Kaien Trails?
Yes! As a non-profit society, Kaien Trails relies entirely on donations, grants and funds from industry, the public and government sources. In February 2024, Kaien Trails will be kicking-off a fundraising campaign that will allow members of the public to donate and receive a tax receipt (for amounts over $20). We recognize that not everyone can support societies financially, but believed that this was an important step towards the society’s longevity and sustainability.
In addition, Kaien Trails is always looking for volunteers to serve on the board, or to help organize events, volunteer days and to get those with unique mobilities out on trails with our Trail Rider. If you want to get involved, sign up through our mailing list on our website.
When will the next segments of the pathway be built?
Kaien Trails is currently completing the detailed design, archeological assessments, environmental permitting and regulatory consultation for the portion of the MUP from the end of Part 1 to the Ridley Island Road. The design and permitting phase are expected to take until September 2024, after which time the society will begin raising funds for the project. Construction is dependent on securing the required funding for the project, which Kaien Trails is actively pursuing.
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