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Red Deer City Council To Consider Possible Upgrades For River Bend Trails

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By Sheldon Spackman

Red Deer City Council meets on Monday and they’re going to consider amending plans to upgrade the Nordic Trails at River Bend Golf and Recreation Area. The previously approved 2014 River Bend Trail Development Canada Winter Games Project will allow for additional changes to the current cross-country ski trails.

Council approved a $729,000 plan in 2014 to enhance and upgrade the trails at River Bend to meet technical requirements to host biathlon and cross country skiing during the 2019 Canada Winter Games. Approved upgrades include widening 5.5 kilometers of the existing 14.5 kilometers of trails, developing a stadium area and renovating the biathlon range.

City officials say however that the Parkland Ski Club (PSC) has identified additional trail enhancements beyond the scope of the 2019 Canada Winter Games project. They include:

    • Widening portions of additional trails to meet modern sporting requirements, including skate skiing and multi-use traffic (skiing, biking, walking and snowshoeing).
    • Creating new trail connections to reduce the need for skiers to cross the River Bend roadway.
    • Brushing and base work on existing trails to improve snow accumulation and drainage.
    • Improving sightlines for enhanced safety on portions of downhill trails.
    • Installing trail lighting to extend trail use and accessibility in the morning and evenings.

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In a release, Recreation Superintendent Barb McKee says “These additional upgrades, including the widening of trails to allow for multi-use, will enhance the recreational opportunities for Red Deerians, while also expanding the capacity of this venue to host regional and provincial cross-country skiing events.”

PSC has applied to receive provincial grant funding to cover the construction cost of these additional upgrades. City Council will consider amending the 2014 River Bend Trail Development Canada Winter Games Project subject to PSC receiving grant funding.

For more information on the proposed changes, visit:

http://www.reddeer.ca/recreation-and-culture/parks-and-trails/cross-country-ski-trails/

(Photo courtesy of the City of Red Deer)

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