The City of Lacombe Council voted unanimously to cancel the Michener Rec Area, Wolf Creek Hwy 12 to Fish Pond and the Trans Canada NE of Henners in favour of prioritizing the Fairway Heights Willow Ridge Network and the Elizabeth Lake 300 m boardwalk.
The cancelled projects will remain part of the overall City Trail Plan for when further funding becomes available.
“All of the projects identified by the Trail Plan are always on deck for funding and execution. We had decide to prioritize these projects because the funding was there,” Deborah Juch, director of community services, said.
Juch said the Trail plan is a living document which is updated generally every five years.
“Typically any planning document has a five-year life span. The community can potentially change so much within five years. With the external environment changing, you want to make sure you are planning to meet the day’s needs,” she said.
Juch said the 2019 purchase of trail counters has shown how widely used Lacombe’s trial system is.
“We did put trail counters out and we were very surprised with the numbers. We will be using them every year from now on,” she said.
Juch added the Elizabeth Lake project will take rising lake levels into consideration.
“They have been steadily rising. It may not be particularly dramatic, but it is continuous. That can be a problem over time,” she said.
Most of the trail system will be similar to shale, woodchip design typically used in Lacombe — however Juch said access to Elizabeth Lake will be made as accessible as possible in order to allow easy entrance into that amenity.
“There will also be what we call goat trails or natural trails which can be quite beautiful,” Juch added.