What’s new with the Westside Legacy Trail
[lead]The Columbia Valley Greenways Trail Alliance has made tremendous progress on the Westside Legacy Trail (WLT) during 2016, and with a planned start date of April 1st, 2017, there’s a lot of reason to celebrate this holiday season. Together, as a community, you’ve helped to raise nearly $2.1M (nearing half of the estimated trail cost), and that deserves a special thank you.[/lead]
With a solid funder base, and the current developments made on the trail the CVGTA is in a prime position for some significant grant opportunities – specifically from BikeBC and the BC Rural Dividend Fund.
Many readers may recall the campaign for the BikeBC $1 Million grant during the 2016 cycle, one we were not able to secure without approval from the Agricultural Land Commission. The BikeBC grant is an initiative to encourage healthy living, and safe cycling infrastructure, which fits the mandate of the WLT completely. This year we will again apply for $1 Million in donation matching funds, of which ALL donations made during the campaign last year are eligible – and, of course, any new donations (Donate Today to take advantage of potential donation matching!).
The second grant already applied for is the BC Rural Dividend Fund for $500k, which is granted to small rural communities looking to invigorate their economies. It has been a foundational pillar of the Westside Legacy Trail’s philosophy to attract new visitors and improve the lives of locals. Many organizations like the Rotary’s Loop the Lake, and the Branch Out Foundation’s Bike Tour have expressed interest in incorporating the Trail into their annual events. Both events bring an influx of visitors, and this trail will be a cornerstone for many new events. Add that to the emerging trend of active-tourism, and the Valley has a recipe for success.
These key grants are supplemented by donations from individuals, businesses and organizations. It would be a massive boost to our 2017 construction schedule if both grants were approved, setting us squarely and significantly ahead. However, it’s important to note the majority of the success of the Westside Legacy Trail has come from local, second home owner, and visitor donations. For more information on the Westside Legacy Trail please visit OurTrail.org.
For readers anxious to visualize what the Westside Legacy Trail will look like, Greenways has prepared overviews of each of the seven segments showing where the trail will be located and where all the amenities will be. Below is the Goldie Creek (first) segment which we plan on commencing construction of on April 1, 2017 (or earlier depending upon weather). To review all seven trail segments, please visit OurTrail.org/segments.