This is your opportunity to let government know what recreation values are important to you! The Provincial Trails Strategy for BC adopted in 2013 is undergoing a government review and the Province is requesting feedback through an online questionnaire from January 13 to February 28, 2020 at 4pm.
This is your chance to ensure that government and policy makers are aware of the trail activities and priorities that are important to you as an outdoor enthusiast and ATV’er.
In order to best support messaging for mixed use trails, we need your support – please share with your club members, family members, hunting and fishing buddies, and anyone else that enjoys BC on an ATV and ask them to complete the online questionnaire.
The formal review process began in 2019 with key stakeholder interviews that ATVBC participated in to help shape the questions for the public engagement survey, and is now up to every one of us, as outdoor enthusiasts and British Columbians, to ensure our voice is heard, and the more people that complete the survey, the louder the voice is, so please do not delay, complete the online questionnaire today!
When completing the questionnaire, here are some points to consider:
Support for mixed use trails aligns with the Trails Strategy Vision of a world-renowned, sustainable network of trails, with opportunities for all.
Mixed use trails align with the Trails Strategy Guiding Principles of:
- Sound Environmental Stewardship and Management
- Mutual Respect between Trail Interests and Other Resource Users
- Respect and Understanding among Diverse Trail Interests
- Partnerships and Collaborations
- Secure Recreation Opportunities for All Trail Users
- Benefits for Individuals, Communities and the Province
At the Federal level, the National Trails Coalition was formed with the Government of Canada as a key partner, to bring the broad spectrum of trail-based activities together in a collaborative manner to build, maintain and promote trails out of the recognition that collaboration rather than exclusionary practices is where the future of trail development is headed. The National Trails Coalition receives Federal Government funding for national recreation trails programs which is distributed to the Provinces evenly between trail disciplines ($10M was distributed during the last funding intake between 2014 to 2016).
Tourism Values & Community Benefits = Improved Trail Maintenance: The greatest strength of the ORV Act is community connectivity and allowing rural communities to establish a designated route into town to access fuel, food, lodging to facilitate tourism for much needed economic diversification in rural communities struggling with downturn in forestry and other financial challenges, to utilize the existing trails infrastructure at their doorstep as a sustainable economic driver as identified by the trails strategy as a significant trend in planning and developing a world-class recreation trail system for BC. Extended trips with overnight stays generate substantially more tourism revenue than day trips, through direct and indirect spending allowing economies to flourish, which in turn gives back to the trail and its upkeep allowing the trails to be kept in pristine condition. Motivate local communities to invest in the trails if there is a good return on investment.
Resource Management – has both a positive and negative effect, as new resource roads allow access into areas previously not accessible however this can also cause access closures if industry is doing extraction in areas that disrupt existing recreational trails, or when roads are deactivated and infrastructure such as bridges are removed – consider the impact on existing and future recreation and tourism values; identify opportunities to increase tourism by enhancing trail networks and resource road connections. Minimize and improve the impact of forestry activities on sustainable trail tourism.
Top challenges with the trail system currently:
- lack of funding for trail maintenance and development
- extensive delays in obtaining approvals for trail maintenance (sec 57)
- achieving a balance between user groups to allow everyone the opportunity to access and enjoy the trail through an inclusive trail system
Please note the questionnaire will take approximately 15-30 minutes