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Municipal staff to seek Millennium Trail launch point alternatives, opinions

UPDATE July 7 – Council at its regular meeting decided proposals for all four launch points are to be sent back to municipal staff for further information, exploring alternative locations, business partnerships, and include discussions with businesses, and neighbours; in consultation with the Trails Ad-hoc committtee and the accessibility commitee.

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UPDATE June 22: Two of the four launch points were removed to receive further information from municipal staff in consultation with the Trails Ad-hoc committee, the accessibility committee, neighbours and local businesses.

Mayor Steve Ferguson led an amendment to seek further review on the Lake Street sitte with particular attention to parking entrances and construction of curbs.

Councillor Phil St. Jean led the amendment to explore alternatives to the Stanley Street Bloomfield location. In agreement with a deputation from the neighbour to the proposed site, he suggested looking at use of the Mill Street Park lot with existing parking lot and washrooms.

Councillor Janice Maynard led the amendment that landscaping and structures at all sites be kept to mimimum to mitigate ongoing maintenance costs.

Four more Millennium Trail launch points are to be modelled after the existing facility in Wellington.

The Millennium Trail Committee seeks council’s approval of four additional ‘launch points’ development plans before members embark on further fundraising to construct them.

In a staff report prepared for council’s Committee of the Whole meeting Thursday, budget breakdowns show a deficit of $57,350 to construct the launch points. The Millennium Trail Ad-Hoc Committee is not requesting additional funds from the municipality, but with its approval, would move forward to raise the short-fall. The committee has already raised $128,250 for the project.

The committee was established in August 2018 to complete five major projects including brushing overgrowth and resurfacing the trail, addressing flooding through two provincially-significant wetlands and installing signs for trail etiquette, wayfinding and education. It raised $658,450 in funding.

The final project is to develop gravel launch points for parking within existing trail property boundaries. The launch points are modelled after the one already in place at Wellington, providing a location for trail users to park vehicles and use a rest area with basic ameneties.

The four proposed locations are at Salem Road near Consecon, Station Road in Hillier, Stanley Street in Bloomfield and Lake Street in Picton. (See maps below)

Amenities could include a gravel parking area, porta-potty style bathroom, covered kiosk with trail information and benches, bicycle repair stand and rack, and a native plant garden created and maintained by PEC Master Gardener volunteers.

As annual operating costs, estimated to be $37,324, would become a new demand on the operating budget, the committee orginally planned to include garbage bins, but found the cost to have staff empty them on a daily basis would be significant, and also offer to promote a “take out everything you brought in approach” at the launch sites.

The 2020 cost to manage the trail is $6,600.
Costs for each launch point location were estimated to include staff wages, equipment, supplies (bags, gloves, bin, surround); gravel maintenance, landscaping and toilet pump out.

The committee held three public open houses in December. No comments were received there with respect to the Salem Road or Stanley Street locations.

A neighbour did express concerns of trespassing on private property at the Station Road location. The committee noted it would address the concern with a heavy vegetation buffer between the two properties, or a fence with ‘no tresspassing’ signage.

Council has previously expressed concern about parking at the Lake Street location near to the liquor store, though the committee notes the launch point design is on a section of property not currently used, and would not affect past parking patterns.

Three people have made notifications to the clerk’s office that they wish to speak to the launch points during the virtual Committee of the Whole meeting, beginning at 1 p.m. Thursday. The public can schedule to present comments by contacting by noon on Wednesday, June 24 to register.


More views of the existing site at Wellington.

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  1. Chris Windfeld says:

    Council seems to focus on the maintenance costs of this new volunteer-driven initiative, when there does not appear to be any maintenance being done on the trail by the County now. Projected costs seem very in line with other facilities that do not see as many users as the trail. In these “Covid-times”, the trail has seen a huge increase in the number of citizens out on the trail getting a rare chance to improve their immune systems, walking, riding, pushing strollers, thanks to the improved surface of the trail. Council seems unable to recognize that the Millennium Trail is a resource that will exponentially increase in popularity as the other County recreational venues remain shuttered.

  2. Andy says:

    If these concerns had been raised at the advertised December 2019 Open Houses, some or all of them could have been addressed and we would be seeing progress this year instead of probably having nothing happen this year.

  3. Ursula Cattelan says:

    Thank you County Live for a good presentation

  4. Dennis Margueratt says:

    Another area that might be considered is at the junction of the trail and Sandy Hook Rd. There are a number of regular users who access the trail at this junction and have to park on the shoulder along Sandy Hook Rd. While this practice is acceptable, the shoulder is not very wide making the off loading of bicycles or pets a touch precarious I should think. Widening the shoulder opposite Lockyer’s Country garden might suffice without the other amenities.

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