Nanaimo-North Cowichan MLA Doug Routley is an avid cyclist himself. (Photo by Don Bodger)

Pedestrian, cyclist infrastructure improvements for North Cowichan

Chemainus Road project will connect to the Cowichan Valley Trail

North Cowichan is approved to receive $282,433 toward the Chemainus Road Multi-Modal Improvements Project that connects to the neighbouring Cowichan Valley Trail.

The project includes pedestrian facilities, actuated crossings, protected bicycle parking and accessibility improvements.

Residents of other Vancouver Island and Gulf Islands communities will also benefit from new and improved pedestrian and cycling infrastructure through the Province’s Active Transportation Grants program that’s helping rebuild B.C.’s economy out of the COVID-19 pandemic and meeting CleanBC climate goals.

“People throughout B.C. have a real appetite for safe, alternative ways of getting around,” said Claire Trevena, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “One way to restart our provincial economy is to work with municipalities and Indigenous communities to support new active transportation projects.

“The funding we are providing will make it easier for people to connect and interact in their community, address the issues of climate change and congestion, and help with people’s physical and mental well-being.”

Related: Saltair Rail With Trail project completed

More than $2 million in Active Transportation Infrastructure Grants have been awarded for the 2020-21 projects.

The program also supports the development of community network plans for future active transportation infrastructure that aligns with the B.C. Active Transportation Design Guide. Six communities in the region will also benefit from an additional $224,000 in funding from the Province’s Active Transportation Network Planning Grant.

With the new funding, Lake Cowichan and North Cowichan will be among the communities in the region developing active transportation network plans that may be considered for future infrastructure funding.

“The Cowichan Valley Trail is a local favourite, and with this investment, it will be more accessible to residents and visitors,” said Doug Routley, MLA for Nanaimo-North Cowichan. “Funding provided through the Active Transportation Infrastructure Grants program will make our communities even better places to live, work and play. Creating stronger transportation networks that connect people to the places they need to go is another way that our government is working hard to make life better for British Columbians. As a lifelong cyclist and Cowichan resident, I know the warmth of the Cowichan Valley is best felt outdoors, and I look forward to seeing more people out on the trails.”

Approved projects may include safety improvements to sidewalks, improved lighting along pathways, multi-use and protected travel lanes, and other amenities that connect people to public transit, downtown cores and schools.

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