Active transportation lane gives boost to Summerside's green goals

·2 min read
Summerside is working with the province to identify more active transportation routes like the one along Greenwood Drive, city officials say. (Submitted by Ken Trenholm - image credit)
Summerside is working with the province to identify more active transportation routes like the one along Greenwood Drive, city officials say. (Submitted by Ken Trenholm - image credit)

Work is underway for the final phase of an active transportation lane that will connect the north end of Summerside all the way down to Water Street.

But city officials hope it is just the beginning of something much bigger.

"I think it really sets a message when people see … residents using our [active transportation] lanes that we're a bike-friendly and an active transportation-friendly community," said J.P. Desrosiers, Summerside's director of community services.

"We've got a beautiful six-kilometre boardwalk along our waterfront. So now residents are connected to that boardwalk from the northern end of our city, and we'll add more connectors as the days go on and the years go on."

It's the latest project in Summerside's goal to become a green community, said Coun. Barb Ramsay.

Wayne Thibodeau/CBC
Wayne Thibodeau/CBC

"With our wind farms and lots of electrical car outlets throughout the city and of course the $69-million solar panel farm that we're building right now, it's pretty exciting."

The first kilometre of the active transportation lane is already in use, stretching from Pope Road to Credit Union Place. The final 800 metres, done in conjunction with water and sewer work, is expected to be complete before the end of November.

Province paying half

The final phase will cost about $500,000, with the province picking up half the cost, said Ramsay, who represents the area on council.

Ramsay said residents had been asking for a sidewalk on Greenwood Drive, and when the opportunity came up to partner with the province on the active transportation lane, it made sense to build it.

"Residents are very excited about it," she said. "It's a safe, accessible way for them to get out and bike and walk and just get some exercise."

The city is working with the province to identify more active transportation routes that can be built, said Coun. Cory Snow.

"This is the start of what we hope to be many years of improving our active transportation routes. You always have to start somewhere before you can finish and it's just good that we can get to Phase 2 already."