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More than $450,000 raised in ten days for Okanagan Rail Trail

Image Credit: Okanagan Rail Trail Initiative
July 13, 2016 - 5:30 PM

OKANAGAN - So far, July has been a busy month for The Okanagan Rail Trail society’s fundraising campaign.

In the first 10 days of July, more than $450,000 was raised. This brings the campaign total close to $700,000, funding nearly 4.4 km of trail construction, according to a release today, July 13.

The society has broken down the costs of construction and $160 in funds equals one metre of trail built.

The cause was helped by a generous anonymous donor. At the end of June, the donor proposed a fund-matching challenge starting on July 1. They offered up $50,000 in matching funds for the donations coming in from July 1 to 10. When $33,000 rolled in on the first three days, they upped their offer to match up to $100,000, a release from the Okanagan Rail Trail society says. 

The donations thus far show that Okanagan outdoor enthusiasts are eager to support this campaign. Don and Cathy Archibald, offered to assist the funds matching program. Between the Archibalds and the original donor, the roughly $225,200 raised will be matched, providing roughly $450,400 towards the construction of the trail.

“This trail will help shape the future of this valley and provide an incredible legacy for our communities,” Don Archibald said. “We need to do all we can to ensure this trail gets built as soon as possible to allow us all to enjoy the benefits.”

Right now the campaign is in stage one: Trail Design & Access Control. Here is a breakdown, according to the Okanagan Rail Trail website, of the four stages of fundraising and construction (including banking and administration fees):

  • Trail Design & Access Control - engineering of trail and gates and barriers controlling access to trail.
  • Intersection Control - systems to control all trail and road intersections.
  • Environmental / Bridges / Rock Scaling - includes all environment analysis and permitting and work to ensure bridges, walls and cliffs along trail are safe.
  • Trailbed Construction & Completion - includes all costs associated with engineering, archaeology, surveying, site preparations, vegetation, signage and wayfinding, and all costs of constructing the trailbed and surface.

Banking/Admin Fees - includes all credit card charges, bank charges and fees associated with providing tax receipts.

If the fundraising campaign keeps its momentum, and is able to reach their stage goals, construction on the Okanagan Rail Trail could begin as early as 2017.

InfoNews has been following the campaign from the beginning, click here for past articles on the rail trail. 

To make on online donation or for more information, visit The Okanagan Rail Trail website.

To contact a reporter for this story, email John McDonald or call 250-808-0143 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016
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