The City of Terrace is getting $921,352 from the provincial government for a long-planned and badly-needed safer way for people walking or cycling along the portion of Lakelse Avenue to the old Skeena Bridge.
Officially called the Lakelse Gateway Connection, the existing gravel shoulder will be replaced by a one-kilometre long separated and protected three-metre wide asphalt pathway.
“This pathway will span from the historic Old Skeena Bridge at the east end to the entry into downtown Terrace at Apsley Street. At Apsley Street, the pathway will terminate at a small gateway feature—likely including signage, landscaping, and a resting area—marking the entrance into downtown Terrace,” said city communications advisor Kate Lautens today.
The concept was first revealed in an extensive 2018 city-commissioned plan to revitalize the downtown area.
It was listed as one of “Ten Big Moves” for the downtown core.
The money comes from $90 million being parceled out by the province to counter any economic downfall from the COVID-19 pandemic.
This is the second significant project for which the city has received money from the province to increase walking and cycling routes within the city.
Last year the city received $500,000 to finish the Grand Trunk Pathway from where it now ends at Frank St. and Hwy16 to the Kalum River Bridge. The cost of the extension is a projected $900,000 and work on this extension has yet to begin.
While the extension is conceived as a recreational addition to the city, the existing portions of the Grand Trunk Pathway are also used by Kitsumkalum residents as a safe pedestrian and cycling route to and from the city.
While the current Grand Trunk Pathway parallels Hwy16 to the south, the extension will run along the north side of the highway. That follows a study indicating extending along the north side of the highway is less complicated and would be less costly than continuing along the south side because of the close proximity of the CN rail line.
The study prepared for the city by McElhanney Consulting and released last year calls for a three-metre wide paved surface with sufficient separation from Hwy16.
There would be some property acquisition required, the consulting company indicated.