September 10, 2016 - 2:30 PM
PENTICTON - The Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen is hopeful negotiations can soon begin to secure the former KVR rail bed south of Penticton for a regional trail now that the Penticton Indian Band has secured tenure to the land.
Community Services Manager Mark Woods says he is looking forward to beginning discussions with the Penticton Indian Band for use of the old KVR railway right of way south of Penticton and north of Kaleden as a hiking trail.
The federal government and the band announced Friday, Sept. 2 the transfer of ownership of the section of right of way between Banbury Green and Penticton back to the band.
Woods says formal discussion hasn’t been possible as long as the band didn’t have clear title.
“We are certainly willing, if and when, to discuss options for continuation of the trail north from Kaleden to Penticton, then more discussion with other partners to move further north to Summerland,” Woods says, noting some of the right of way through Penticton is owned by several locatee owners.
He says the negotiations will likely take some time to complete.
Woods says there aren’t many alternatives to trail routing between Kaleden and Penticton, noting if negotiations weren’t successful, the trail would likely have to be routed along the highway.
“It was always the plan to go along the highway. Options are limited along that section,” he says.
Woods says the band has shown interest in a regional trail concept, noting an arrangement between the City of Penticton and the band shares cost and maintenance of the Okanagan Channel trail.
Map showing former CP rail right of way. Marked in red is the section which was recently transferred back to the Penticton Indian Band.
Image Credit: Penticton Indian Band
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