August 14, 2013 - 2:00 PM
West Kelowna, British Columbia – Representatives gathered today to celebrate the completion of the third phase of upgrades to Gellatly Road and Trail along Okanagan Lake. Improvements were made to the road surface and existing lakeside trail, along with the addition of cycling lanes, pedestrian lookouts, streetlights, dedicated parking with assigned handicapped stalls, storm sewers and catch basins, as well as the planting of 70 trees and drought-tolerant, irrigated landscaping. The total cost of the project was $3.15 million.
“Our government is investing in infrastructure projects that strengthen the economy and contribute to a healthier, more sustainable environment for communities across the country,” said Dan Albas, Member of Parliament for Okanagan—Coquihalla. “Ongoing improvements to Gellatly Road will help improve traffic flow and keep local residents and visitors moving safely and efficiently.”
The federal Gas Tax Fund provided $800,000 toward the cycling and pedestrian components of the project. Developer contributions provided $994,000 to assist with road and trail upgrades, and the remaining $1.36 million was funded through District of West Kelowna reserves.
Mayor Doug Findlater said upgrades to Gellatly Road and the parallel recreational corridor will provide excellent returns on investment.
“Gellatly Bay is the District of West Kelowna’s most treasured waterfront area, drawing thousands of residents and visitors each year and providing a showcase for tourism in our community. Improvements to this transportation and recreational corridor are vital, not only to West Kelowna’s future financial health, but also to the wellbeing of our residents.”
“These latest upgrades to Gellatly Bay make this part of the province even more beautiful and accessible for both locals and visitors,” said Westside-Kelowna MLA Christy Clark. “This is a great example of how local leadership and businesses can work together to improve infrastructure and grow our economy.”
“Communities throughout BC are improving roads to expand travel options for local residents,” said Union of BC Municipalities President Mary Sjostrom. “I am very pleased to see federal funding support for this upgrade to West Kelowna’s road and trail system.”
The federal Gas Tax Fund transfer provides long-term funding to municipalities across the country to build and revitalize their local infrastructure. The Government of Canada has invested over $10 billion to date in municipal infrastructure through this program, and passed legislation to make it a permanent transfer of $2 billion per year. As part of Economic Action Plan 2013, the Government committed to index the Gas Tax Fund to provide additional funding for communities, starting in 2014. Between 2006 and 2014, British Columbia will receive more than $1.56 billion from the Gas Tax Fund to improve local infrastructure. The Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM) administers the Gas Tax Fund in BC, in collaboration with Canada and British Columbia.
For additional information about federal investments in infrastructure and to stay up-to-date with Web feeds, visit www.infrastructure.gc.ca.
For further information about Canada's Economic Action Plan, visit www.actionplan.gc.ca.
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013