Upgrades coming to Kettle Valley Rail Trail between Chute Lake and Myra Canyon | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Upgrades coming to Kettle Valley Rail Trail between Chute Lake and Myra Canyon

Image Credit: Shutterstock
September 10, 2021 - 5:02 PM

The Kettle Valley Rail Trail has become weathered along sections between Kelowna and Naramata, where sandy sections have become difficult to cycle along – but more than $84,000 worth of upgrades are about to resume.

“It’s quite damaged from years of traffic and erosion,” Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen project manager Kyle Gabelhei said.

Thanks to funding from the provincial Forest Employment Program, the regional district is spending $85,454 on three-kilometres worth of upgrades in several spots along an 18-kilometre stretch of the trail. There will be 20 sections where work needs to be done between Chute Lake and Myra Canyon.

The project begins on Monday, Sept. 13, and is expected to be complete by the end of the month. The trail will remain open during construction but the public is being asked to respect equipment, barriers and all posted signage, as well as expect delays.

READ MORE: Crews work to assess damage from washout on KVR trail near Summerland

The project was delayed due to the threat of wildfires earlier this summer.

“The trail is quite high up in the thick timber,” Gabelhei said. “We were willing delaying it by a couple months to offset the risk of any potential fires.”

The first phase of the project took place earlier in the summer, when base preparation and drainage improvements were completed.

When asked how many other sections of the trail are in need of upgrades between Penticton and Kelowna, and how big of a priority those improvements are to the regional district, regional district communications coordinator Erick Thompson said the trail improvements are meant to address surface conditions to improve the user experience.

“Maintaining and improving regional trails continues to be a priority for the (regional district) throughout the region in partnership with the province and other groups and organizations,” Thompson said. “This work will continue on a priority basis as grants and other funding becomes available.”

The regional district is completing the work in partnership with Recreation Sites and Trails B.C. and the Thompson-Okanagan Tourism Association.

READ MORE: New brewery proposed alongside KVR trail in Penticton

The Kettle Valley Rail Trail in June, 2021 following the completion of Phase 1 of the upgrades.
The Kettle Valley Rail Trail in June, 2021 following the completion of Phase 1 of the upgrades.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED/RDOS

To contact a reporter for this story, email Dan Walton or call 250-488-3065 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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