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Brad Clements is an economics professor at Okanagan College, when he's not promoting the possibility of a walking / cycling path along three lakes, between Coldstream & Kelowna.  Read more below....

 

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Okanagan College economist Brad Clements told us the Canadian National Railway is unlikely to find a sustainable operator for their line between Coldstream and downtown Kelowna.  If no suitable operator is found, CN may trigger a regulated process to sell the line.  Each of four levels of government: federal, provincial, regional & municipal, in that order, then sequentially have 30 days in which to complete an agreement.  If no sale is agreed upon, CN may then sell the property, title by title, to the highest bidders, for a variety of uses.  This would break up the transport corridor forever, leaving Okanagan valley citizens with no intact corridor for future rail or commuter use.

The Okanagan Rail Trail Initiative Society (ORTIS) hopes to convince our four levels of government of the importance of acquiring & retaining this transport corridor, for the benefit of all citizens.  They believe it would make great sense to develop it as a community cycling & walking trail, which would be attractive to tourists & locals alike.  The corridor is  49.9km long, along Kalamalka, Wood & Duck Lakes, connecting OC Vernon, UBCO, Kelowna Airport & the north end of downtown Kelowna.  Not all CN's property would be required for a viable trail, leaving some of the more valuable Kelowna parcels available for a separate sale.

ORTIS could use our members' help to inform people of this opportunity, build support for keeping the transport corridor, & assisting with development of a trail.  See www.okanaganrailtrail.ca