The Perseverance Trail Run – Cumberland is still planning on expanding its trail toward Comox Lake. Photo supplied

The Perseverance Trail Run – Cumberland is still planning on expanding its trail toward Comox Lake. Photo supplied

Village of Cumberland, Rotary partner on Orchard Trail

Plans still in works for larger trail project to connect community with Comox Lake

A path is clearing for some trail work in Cumberland due to a partnership between the Village and local Rotarians.

The work is connected to a larger plan to connect Comox Lake with downtown, a project that is still on hold because of land negotiations.

At the regular Village of Cumberland meeting on Oct. 28, council approved a motion for staff to enter into an agreement with the Rotary Club of Cumberland Centennial for the Orchard Trail Improvement Project.

Rotary first approached the Village in 2015 about building a trail from Comox Lake to the core of downtown. The club and Village staff have been working on the “complementary partnership” to make improvements to the Orchard Trail.

Kevin McPhedran, parks and outdoor recreation coordinator, updated council at the latest meeting. The Orchard Trail represents a section of the proposed route. This all falls under the broader Paths to Recreation project that will reach Comox Lake, with the Orchard Trail stretch connecting the core of Cumberland to the Wellington Colliery Trail in Coal Creek Historic Park.

RELATED STORY: Registration filling up for Cumberland trail run

RELATED STORY: Crew begins work on Cumberland trail network

One of the issues holding things up has been the acquisition of some private land needed to provide a means for a bridge crossing at Perseverance Creek.

“That private land is currently under discussion,” McPhedran said. “We’re awaiting the outcomes of that process to determine whether it makes sense to invest further resources to work on building the trail, given that that crossing is kind of a crux in the project.”

The hope is for the land acquisition to happen in 2020. However, the arrangement would have to include a number of partners, including the regional district, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure and the Komok’s First Nation.

The Orchard Trail agreement, while part of the bigger trail route, will allow for “on-the-ground” improvements in the area over the short term while the land deal is completed. Through the Orchard agreement, Rotary can make up to $4,000 available with matching funds available from the Village.

As a result, the 2019 parks budget has $3,315 for “Rotary Trail to Recreation Design and Engineering,” to be reallocated for the improvements over the short term as a result of the Orchard Trail agreement. “What we looked at is the trail informally known as Porky’s path,” McPhedran said.

Some on council were concerned about the idea of renaming the trail, though McPhedran clarified the Orchard Trail name would only cover a specific stretch, while the Porky’s name would be kept for the part between an alley and Comox Lake Road.

The intention of the work, he added, is not to change the character of the trail but to fix some drainage issues and make it more accessible. The plan is to proceed with the work this fall.

Coun. Vickey Brown said she uses the trail almost daily and had concerns about the extent of clearing planned – up to two metres.

“That feels really wide on that strip,” she said. “Keeping it narrow, I think, adds to the character of the trail.”

As well, while she had not seen actual bears, she has spotted scat and recommended signs or some form of education to make users aware of bears in the area and what times the area should be avoided.

“My concern would be that this is a major bear highway,” she said.

Coun. Jesse Ketler raised questions about the current stewardship agreement for the route. McPhedran responded there had been vandalism at a tool shed this past summer during which about $1,000 worth of tools was taken. However, these tools could be stored at the waterworks compound, though he said this arrangement is a “work in progress.”



mike.chouinard@comoxvalleyrecord.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Village of Cumberland, Rotary partner on Orchard Trail

Just Posted

The suspect is described as approximately 20-25 years old, between 5’3 to 5’4, with dark hair. He was wearing black Adidas pants, white shoes, and a puffy grey jacket. Photo supplied
Attempted robbery in Courtenay

Investigators from the Comox Valley RCMP Major Crime Unit are investigating

The Fifth Street Bridge requires structural improvements, new coating to repair and prevent corrosion, and deck repairs. File photo
Fifth Street Bridge repairs to proceed in Courtenay

The unofficial results are in for the Fifth Street Bridge Rehabilitation Alternative… Continue reading

Windy conditions in Nanaimo’s Lost Lake area. (News Bulletin file photo)
Wind warning issued for the east coast of Vancouver Island

Environment Canada says people ‘should be on the lookout’ for adverse weather conditions

BC Hydro will release higher volumes of water down the Puntledge River on Nov. 24-25. Black Press file photo
BC Hydro testing hydroelectric facility system along Puntledge River all week

Tests will result in high water levels, possible siren initiation

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, Nov. 23, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. daily COVID-19 cases hits record 941 on Tuesday

Further restrictions on indoor exercise take effect

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

(Pixabay.com)
Man, 28, warned by Kootenay police to stop asking people to marry him

A woman initially reported the incident to police before they discovered others had been popped the question

Winston Blackmore (left) and James Oler (right) were sentenced on separate charges of polygamy this week in Cranbrook Supreme Court.
No more charges expected in Bountiful investigation, special prosecutor says

Special prosecutor says mandate has ended following review of evidence from Bountiful investigations

Jesse Ketler was acclaimed Tuesday as chair of the Comox Valley Regional District board. Scott Stanfield photo
Cumberland director to serve second term as CVRD board chair

Jesse Ketler has been acclaimed chair of the Comox Valley Regional District… Continue reading

(Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Refuse to follow B.C.’s mask mandate? Face a $230 fine

Masks are now required to be worn by all British Columbians, 12 years and older

Parksville’s French Creek Harbour experienced a diesel spill on Nov. 23 after a barge and fishing vessel collided. (Mandy Moraes photo)
Coast Guard cleans up diesel spill in Parksville’s French Creek Harbour

Barge carrying fuel truck collides with fishing vessel

Stock photo
Senior from Gibsons caught viewing child porn sentenced to 10 months

74-year-old pleaded guilty after police seized 1,500-2,500 images

Most Read