October 09, 2015 - 6:30 PM
KAMLOOPS – A proposed road to a gravel pit in the Barnhartvale area has residents concerned about possibly losing their hiking trail, while the City of Kamloops has concerns about a busy service road running through a residential neighbourhood.
The owner of the Hunter Gravel Pit has applied to the province to run a road into his operation through Crown land. The road would cross McLeod Drive in Barnhartvale and according to the application, create “a more efficient connection to the existing aggregate producing Hunter Pit with existing City of Kamloops streets.”
Tammy Jones is a brand-new Barnhartvale resident and walks her dog Jonesy along the hiking in question path every day. She says she enjoys the natural beauty and meandering system of trails in the area so is one of the people in the neighbourhood opposed to the proposed road.
“We would lose all of that,” she says.
The city's development and engineering director Marvin Kwiatkowski says the trail is not an official city hiking trail, but one appropriated by residents. He says the city’s parks master plan has earmarked this same area – from Barnhartvale to Juniper Ridge – to build a trail. If a road were built to the gravel pit he says a trail would likely just run alongside it.
Kwiatkowski says the city’s real concern is an industrial road running through a residential neighbourhood and the subsequent punishment to infrastructure.
“(We’re concerned about the) reduced lifespan of pavement structure on a street that is not intended for heavy truck traffic.”
Kwiatkowski also cites a host of other issues including, increased noise and dust, safety concerns surrounding children playing or biking in the area, and increased congestion at roundabout at Dallas Drive and Todd Road.
While the city did not highlight environmental issues among their list of concerns, but he says this road would run through silt bluffs, therefore, making drainage and slope stability factors.
Jones says is she is also concerned about her safety along a potentially busy road, but more than that, she loves her Barnhartvale trails for their natural beauty and thinks it would be a shame for her and her dog Jonesy to lose that.
"It would be a huge loss to anyone who has a fur baby that lives up there."
Residents concerned about the proposed road have until Tuesday, Oct. 13 to comment on the application.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015