Eric McGuinness, The Hamilton Spectator
(Jul 16, 2009)
More than $2 million in federal and provincial infrastructure grants is paving the way for construction of a bridge for pedestrians and cyclists across the Lincoln Alexander Parkway at Arbour Road and the start of a 10-kilometre east Mountain trail loop that will eventually cross the bridge.
Just under $1 million is coming from a federal-provincial program, and $1 million-plus for the bridge from Investing in Ontario.
The federal-provincial money will also pay for energy-efficient washrooms in the new Eramosa Karst Conservation Area and expansion of the Fifty Point Conservation Area campground in Winona.
The bridge is a City of Hamilton project, the campground and karst land belong to the Hamilton Conservation Authority and the trail loop is a joint effort.
The trail, intended to compensate for open space lost to the Red Hill Valley Parkway, will one day connect Felker's Falls Conservation Area, Paramount Park, Glendale Falls, Albion Falls Park, Mount Albion Conservation Area, the karst conservation area and Valley Park.
The partners will call tenders for the first two kilometres as soon as permission is obtained from the Niagara Escarpment Commission.
The first of four phases will run from Felker's Falls west to the top of the parkway near Glendale Falls, connecting to trails through Red Hill Valley that will extend to Lake Ontario once a planned pedestrian bridge is built across the QEW.
Sandy Bell, the authority's manager of design and development, said Fifty Point will add 24 serviced sites to its existing 46 to meet growing demand.
Rob Norman, the city's manager of open space development and parks planning, says the Arbour Road bridge will serve as a hub connecting the Escarpment Rail Trail, Bruce Trail, Red Hill Valley Trail and the Chippawa Trail leading south to Caledonia.