Many will agree that a proposed multi-use trail along Okanagan Lake would be an asset to the community, but getting such a trail in place remains a huge and expensive project.
The Summerland Rotary Club has now become involved with the trail project and municipal council has voted to endorse the Rotary Club to apply for any available grants for the work.
The trail, along Okanagan Lake, would connect Lowertown and Trout Creek. In summer, there are many tourists who would use this route and throughout the year, residents would also use it.
At present, those wishing to walk or bicycle between the two locations must use Highway 97, which can be busy during the summer months. A multi-use trail would provide a much safer connection.
The trail would also serve as a link in a longer series of pedestrian and bicycle routes in the Okanagan.
The biggest obstacle to the proposed trail has been the cost. The price tag has been estimated at around $850,000.
While grant funding would help to pay some of the costs, grants alone will not pay the entire bill. No matter what funding is available, the trail will come at a significant cost.
The costs do not end once the construction has been completed. There will be ongoing expenses in its maintenance and upkeep. This is the case with all trails, parks and other amenities.
Rotary’s involvement is an important part in making the trail a reality. The service club has taken on other large community projects in the past. Other service clubs are also responsible for the work which has been done in creating some of the parks and trails in place elsewhere in Summerland.
The trail project is needed, but even with the Rotary Club’s support, it remains a huge undertaking.