County of Simcoe
Grand Opening of Hickling Recreational Trail connects Barrie to Springwater
Midhurst, ON – June 28, 2017
The County of Simcoe welcomed local partners from the City of Barrie and the Township of Springwater and representatives from funding partners Hydro One Limited and Trans Canada Trail for the grand opening of the Hickling Recreational Trail today.
The Hickling Recreational Trail is the first multi-use trail that directly connects Barrie to Springwater and is one of four additional trail connections being constructed over the summer that will allow residents using non-motorized means of transportation to move between the two municipalities. These five sections of new trails will also complete an 11 kilometre gap in the Trans Canada Trail between Springwater and Barrie and help form part of the 165 km Simcoe County Loop Trail which will launch later this summer. The Hickling Recreational Trail is 1.5 km in length, has an average width of 3 metres and has been designed to be accessible, for non-motorized uses with a firm gravel surface with screenings.
This Active Transportation Infrastructure project, which includes all five trail sections, cost a total of approximately $600,000. This includes $103,750 in combined funding from the Trans Canada Trail and Hydro One Limited ($90,000); up to $103,750 from the Government of Canada through the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program (CIP 150); and $400,000 from the County of Simcoe.
County’s Commitment to Forestry and Recreation:
At approximately 33,000 acres and growing, the Simcoe County Forest is the largest municipally-owned forest in Ontario and among the largest of its kind in Canada. The County continues to invest in strategic forestry acquisitions and within the past decade, the County Forest has expanded by more than 3,700 acres. Through its Trails Connecting Communities Program, the County makes $250,000 in annual funding available to local municipalities to construct and improve active transportation infrastructure, which often include, but not limited to, recreational trails. Since 2009, the County has provided more than $1.5 million to local municipalities towards the completion of 61 trail and active transportation projects. Furthermore, our County-owned forests contain more than 450 km of trails used for various recreational purposes. These trails are developed and maintained by non-profit groups through a high degree of volunteerism.
About The Great Trail by Trans Canada Trail:
Trans Canada Trail (TCT) has established a goal of connecting 24,000 kms of The Great Trail from coast to coast to coast in 2017 to celebrate Canada 150. The Hickling Recreational Trail completes a long standing gap between the North Simcoe Rail Trail (in Springwater Township) and the TCT network within the City of Barrie.
County of Simcoe is composed of sixteen member municipalities and provides crucial public services to County residents in addition to providing paramedic and social services to the separated cities of Barrie and Orillia.
Listen to the audio below: