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Partnerships, community support will improve Millennium Trail

Upgrades to the County’s Millennium Trail will be under way through new community partnerships.

The 53km Millennium Trail is a re-purposed abandoned rail line acquired from Canadian National Railway in 1997, running through Carrying Place, Consecon, Wellington and Bloomfield, to Picton.

It has since been converted into a multi-use recreational feature for the enjoyment of County residents and visitors for walking, for snowmobilers, hikers, cyclists, ATV riders and cross country skiers.

With the exception of 11kms improved in recent years by the Rotary Club of Wellington, the majority of the trail’s surface remains gravel or uneven dirt, and offers little to no directional signage.

With the goal of making the trail more user-friendly, the municipality has partnered with the PEC Trails Committee to raise funds to re-surface the trail and add signage and other features.

As part of the project, the trail will be graded and re-surfaced with crushed limestone, making it more accessible. Upgrades will also include the installation of kilometre markers and way-finding signage to help guide trail users to nearby points of interest.

“The Millennium Trail is a point of pride for our community,” said Mayor Robert Quaiff. “I see this project as an investment in a community asset that serves both as a recreational facility for our residents and as an added attraction for our visitors.”

The PEC Trails Committee – a group of like-minded individuals dedicated to promoting and maintaining County trails- has committed to raising $80,000 over the next year to support the trail’s refurbishment. The municipality will be dedicating $370,000 over the next three years, for a total project budget of $450,000. The committee began fundraising in late 2016, and has already garnered support of a local philanthropist as yet unnamed who has committed to matching, dollar for dollar, all donations to a maximum of $40,000.

“This project to complete the upgrading of the Millennium Trail is the realization of the primary and first objective of the PEC Trail Committee,” said Barry Davidson, Chair. “It will contribute greatly to the enjoyment of the County lands through which it runs and provide an alternative transportation link between Carrying Place, Consecon, Hillier, Wellington, Bloomfield and Picton.”

As of February 1st, the committee had already raised $28,000 – a sizeable portion of that sum coming from the Prince Edward Trail Riders Snowmobile Club, which donated $4,000 and will be recognized on four kilometre markers along the trail.

The PEC Trails Committee will be collecting donations throughout 2017. All donors of over $20 are to receive recognition on the PEC Trails website, a Friends of the Millennium Trail membership, and a donation tax receipt.

Project donors of more than $200 will also get special recognition on the trail, and donors of more than $1,000 will get name rights on a kilometre marker. For details, visit https://pectrails.ca/

Filed Under: Local News

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