Construction on the 600 metre extension to the Humber River cycle / walking trail is well under way. While this new (breathtakingly beautiful) section will begin at the north end of Cruickshank Park it will end at Mallaby Park, tantalizingly disconnected from the rest of the trail which resumes at Fairglen Crescent. Apparently negotiations are proceeding which will sort out rights of way and allow the two sections to link up. This will save cyclists some nasty traffic encounters north of St Phillips and allow for an almost traffic-free trip to the lake from the North of Toronto.
The entrance to Cruickshank Park will be the scene of a press conference to be held at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, April 30 by York South-Weston MP Mike Sullivan. He will unveil a bill to enhance ‘environmental protection of the Humber River by amending the Navigable Waters Protection Act‘.
The event will take place at the pedestrian entrance to the park at Weston and Church.
As part of Phase 1 of the Mid Humber Trail Project, a 600 metre extension will link the northern end of the Humber Trail – currently at Cruickshank Park to the Mallaby Park steps. This 3.5 metre wide pavement (matching the rest of the trail) will be placed over the current dirt path.
The construction is expected to last 4-6 weeks beginning in ‘early summer’ and contractors will operate from the parking lot at Lawrence and Little. More information on the construction can be found here as well as during a drop-in session at the Weston Library March 6, between 7 pm and 9 pm.
For Phase 2, the city is currently looking at options to extend the trail from Mallaby Park to Fairglen Crescent where the trail continues.
Winter 2011-2012 has been a non-event and even before it is officially over, spring is well under way with grass greening, trees budding and people out enjoying Weston’s beautiful parkland by the Humber River. Here are a few of the sights around Weston this past Sunday March 18.
If past seasons are anything to go by, we may not have seen the last of the snow. Let’s hope that nature makes an exception.
Just a quick item to inform readers that the City of Toronto is looking for input on their new multi-use bicyle lane projects as outlined here. From the link is an input form that looks like it has to be printed off and faxed.
The city would like to extend the bike trail that ends abruptly at Cruickshank Park and link it via the riverbank to rejoin the network north of the 401 avoiding streets and traffic entirely. Apparently the various property owners along the route have been consulted.
Another project proposes extending the west-rail path north along the rail lines. Right now their plan is to come north and when it reaches Black Creek and Weston, to follow north along the creek. Ideally, it would continue along the railway and head up into Weston Village.
The bad news is that the deadline for for comments is Friday February 24.
Although plans are in place to continue the Humber Trail beyond its current abrupt ending in Cruickshank Park, it’s unlikely we’ll see any progress on the ‘Weston Gap’ this year. According to Transportation Planner Jennifer Hyland, City Transportation Services are involved with negotiations on property transfers with the Ontario Ministry of Transportation. This would take the trail to Mallaby Park. In addition, there are plans to incorporate a 4m wide path on the west side of the railway bridge by 2014.
Ms Hyland also says that progress has been slow because of the ‘varying property interests’.
Let’s hope that planners and politicians can redouble their efforts on this important project so that cyclists and trail walkers can appreciate the stunning beauty of the Weston section of the Humber Valley. This will also allow Weston to capitalize on its bicycle connection.