Phase Three of the Rotary Trail adjacent to the railway tracks has been completed thanks to support from Telus and the Courtenay Rotary Club.
The first phase of the pathway from Fifth Street to the Courtenay Train Station was completed in 2011. A second section from Cumberland Road to 17th Street was added last year. Phase Three extends from 17th to 21st streets.
The hard-surface gravel Rail With Trail is conducive to walking or cycling, and can be used to commute downtown.
The City of Courtenay thanked the two sponsors Thursday at the train station. Telus contributed $20,000 through its TV for Good campaign, which has generated more than $7.2 million for 58 community projects since 2009.
“As a parent and grandparent, I recognize how important it is to have safe, accessible outdoor spaces to spend time with your family, especially on beautiful Vancouver Island,” said Ray Lawson, Telus general manager for Vancouver Island.
The Courtenay Rotary Club has raised $100,000 for each of the three phases. It continues to be a partner and project supporter.
Rotary hopes this marks the first stage of a grand loop to 26th Street, through the forested area by Winners, and extending underneath the roadway and into the Air Park walkway, says club president Dave White.
“This way it will hopefully curve around to the water at the end and then go along the river,” White said. “So it’ll be one big loop. That’s our goal. This one will hopefully link to Victoria.”
The trail is a partnership between the City, Courtenay Rotary and the Island Corridor Foundation.
The foundation’s goal is to expand multi-purpose use of the E&N rail corridor. It is working with local governments bordering the corridor to develop similar projects.
The long-term goal is a trail extending the length of the rail corridor on Vancouver Island, stretching 234 kilometres.
For more information, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, visit www.courtenay.ca or call 250-334-4441.