Consider Xget’tem (pronounced “hucktum”) Trail extended to upper Sahali.
The city is eyeing grant funding for its next multi-use pathway, a $2-million project along Summit Drive connecting upper Sahali and downtown.
On Tuesday, Feb. 11, Kamloops council will be asked to apply for $500,000 in funding from the BC Active Transportation Infrastructure Grants Program. The city would pay the remaining $1.5 million for the pathway. Council increased capital spending on active transportation by nearly double in recent years, to $2.5 million per year, in order to accelerate projects outlined in the city’s Transportation Master Plan, including this pathway, which is deemed “high priority.”
City CAO David Trawin said the multi-use pathway would fill a gap in alternative transportation infrastructure connecting upper Sahali and downtown. Bike lanes already exist in upper Sahali and Xget’tem’ Trail — a multi-use pathway that opened in the fall of 2018 — connects downtown to lower Sahali. Xget’tem’ ends at the corner of Notre Dame Drive and Summit Drive, where the new multi-use path would begin.
Xget’tem Trail is a 1.7-kilometre paved stretch through Peterson Creek, which the city built for $3.7 million, of which $1 million came from a Bike BC grant.
Welcome to Xget'tem Trail
The proposed Summit Drive multi-use path would be a separated three-metre-wide pathway, with lighting, trees and crosswalks, running along Summit Drive from Notre Dame Drive to Whiteshield Crescent South.
“This basically fills that gap and creates a linkage between upper Sahali and downtown,” Trawin said.
A staff report to council notes priority of the project due to the “high traffic area” for city and highway commuters. It also states Notre Dame Drive and Summit Drive is among the top 10 collision intersections in the city, according to ICBC statistics.
From Notre Dame Drive, the proposed pathway would follow the east side of Summit Drive past the Trans-Canada Highway on-ramp before crossing Summit Drive at the bottom of Springhill Drive and travelling along the east side of Summit Drive to Whiteshield Crescent South, where a Peterson Creek Park trail head is located, effectively making another entrance into Peterson Creek more accessible for pedestrians and cyclists.
A portion of the pathway will then continue on both sides slightly south of Whitesheild Crescent South. Trawin said the reason for designing the pathway to cross the street is due to private property and interference from the slope with the Trans-Canada Highway highway overpass.
“Once you start trying to deal with overpasses and you have to cut and things, it becomes very, very costly,” he said.
Trawin said commuter safety is not an issue because the pathway will be separated from the road.
The project falls within the city’s existing active transportation budget and the city would pay for its share using gas tax funding, Trawin said, which is federal money distributed through the Union of B.C. Municipalities to communities to help pay for projects like public transit, recreation and local roads and bridges.
The city aims to start the project this summer. The next major project is expected to be an overpass on Summit Drive, for which the city has set aside $870,000 from its 2019 budget.