Long-time hiker Luke Faught strolls down a Riverdale trail in Whitehorse on June 10. The City of Whitehorse’s 2020 trail plan is still a work in progress, but Parks and Community Development Manager Landon Kulych says the City of Whitehorse’s 2020 trail plan will focus largely on the management of the estimated 850 kilometres of trails within the city. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)

Trail plan would focus on management of city pathways

Public input will be sought ahead of final plan coming forward

The City of Whitehorse’s 2020 trail plan is still a work in progress, but parks and community development manager Landon Kulych says it will focus largely on managing the estimated 850 kilometres of trails within the city.

That compares with the current trail plan that was finalized in 2007 focusing on cataloging and tracking the trails throughout the city.

“It’s time to manage what we have,” Kulych said during a Sept. 10 council and administrative roundtable meeting.

The roundtable outlined a number of recommendations coming forward in the draft plan that will once again be released for public comment before final revisions are done and the plan is put to Whitehorse city council for adoption.

Lee and Associates principal Heidi Redman presented council with a number of recommendations outlined in the draft, highlighting the results of a survey and meetings which showed the importance of trails to much of the Whitehorse population.

“The trail network is a critical asset to the community,” she said, after noting many of those responding to the online survey and in stakeholder meetings reported using trails every day and living within five minutes of at least one.

Among the recommendations would be the continued work to finish the remaining neighbourhood trail plans that were started out of the 2007 trail plan. A total of four have been completed with another two for Whitehorse North and Whitehorse South to be done.

There would also be continued work to integrate First Nations languages and traditional place names in partnership with local First Nations into trail signage and names.

Similar to an agreement the city has with the Kwanlin Dün First Nation, a memorandum of understanding with the Ta’an Kwäch’än Council would be pursued on trail maintenance and planning.

That’s something Mayor Dan Curtis said he was pleased to see as he noted his support for signage being available in English, French and Southern Tutchone.

Improved online mapping as well as a printed copy of local trails and an etiquette guide aimed at reducing trail conflicts are among other suggestions from the draft.

Coun. Jan Stick cited the need for printed material, noting that in her other role as owner of Well-Read Books, she’s seen many customers purchasing Whitehorse & Area Hikes and Bikes that was published in 1995 by the Yukon Conservation Society.

While there is a lot of information online detailing local trails, there’s also many looking for printed material, she said. It was of particular interest this past spring and summer during the pandemic.

“People really wanted to know where to go,” she said.

Kulych said that while printed materials can be out of date quickly, a simple pamphlet highlighting key walking routes that aren’t likely to change is proposed.

“We know there is a desire for that out there,” he said.

The draft plan also suggests the city explore a number of issues such as snow removal on trails and how electric mobility devices fit into trail use, though any action would depend on what comes out of looking at those issues and discussions with the public.

While Coun. Samson Hartland praised the plan, he also said he would like to know the costs of implementation.

Redman noted that will be part of the final document that will be put to council later this year.

Questioned by Coun. Steve Roddick on how short-, medium- and long-term goals will be set, Kulych said officials will look at costs and viability of the recommendations before setting them into those categories.

It’s anticipated the city will soon begin looking for public feedback on the draft which will then be used to draft the final document that will go to council for adoption in late 2020.

Contact Stephanie Waddell at stephanie.waddell@yukon-news.com

Whitehorse city council

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Children’s performer Claire Ness poses for a photo for the upcoming annual Pivot Festival. “Claire Ness Morning” will be a kid-friendly performance streamed on the morning of Jan. 30. (Photo courtesy Erik Pinkerton Photography)
Pivot Festival provides ‘delight and light’ to a pandemic January

The festival runs Jan. 20 to 30 with virtual and physically distant events

The Boulevard of Hope was launched by the Yukon T1D Support Network and will be lit up throughout January. It is aimed at raising awareness about Yukoners living with Type 1 diabetes. (Stephanie Waddell/Yukon News)
Boulevard of Hope sheds light on Type 1 diabetes

Organizers hope to make it an annual event

City of Whitehorse city council meeting in Whitehorse on Oct. 5, 2020. An updated council procedures bylaw was proposed at Whitehorse city council’s Jan. 18 meeting that would see a few changes to council meetings and how council handles certain matters like civil emergencies. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Whitehorse procedures bylaw comes forward

New measures proposed for how council could deal with emergencies

A Yukon survey querying transportation between communities has already seen hundreds of participants and is the latest review highlighting the territory’s gap in accessibility. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Multiple reports, survey decry lack of transportation between Yukon communities

A Community Travel survey is the latest in a slew of initiatives pointing to poor accessibility

Mobile vaccine team Team Balto practises vaccine clinic set-up and teardown at Vanier Catholic Secondary School. Mobile vaccine teams are heading out this week to the communities in order to begin Moderna vaccinations. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
Mobile vaccine teams begin community vaccinations

“It’s an all-of-government approach”

A file photo of grizzly bear along the highway outside Dawson City. Yukon conservation officers euthanized a grizzly bear Jan. 15 that was originally sighted near Braeburn. (Alistair Maitland/Yukon News file)
Male grizzly euthanized near Braeburn

Yukon conservation officers have euthanized a grizzly bear that was originally sighted… Continue reading

Mayor Dan Curtis listens to a councillor on the phone during a city council meeting in Whitehorse on April 14, 2020. Curtis announced Jan. 14 that he intends to seek nomination to be the Yukon Liberal candidate for Whitehorse Centre in the 2021 territorial election. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Whitehorse mayor seeking nomination for territorial election

Whitehorse mayor Dan Curtis is preparing for a run in the upcoming… Continue reading

Gerard Redinger was charged under the <em>Civil Emergency Measures Act</em> with failing to self-isolate and failing to transit through the Yukon in under 24 hours. (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
Man ticketed $1,150 at Wolf Creek campground for failing to self-isolate

Gerard Redinger signed a 24-hour transit declaration, ticketed 13 days later

Yukon Energy, Solvest Inc. and Chu Níikwän Development Corporation are calling on the city for a meeting to look at possibilities for separate tax rates or incentives for renewable energy projects. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
Tax changes sought for Whitehorse energy projects

Delegates call for separate property tax category for renewable energy projects

Yukon University has added seven members to its board of governors in recent months. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)
New members named to Yukon U’s board of governors

Required number of board members now up to 17

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
Yukonomist: Your Northern regulatory adventure awaits!

“Your Northern adventure awaits!” blared the headline on a recent YESAB assessment… Continue reading

Yukoner Shirley Chua-Tan is taking on the role of vice-chair of the social inclusion working group with the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences’ oversight panel and working groups for the autism assessment. (Submitted)
Canadian Academy of Health Sciences names Yukoner to panel

Shirley Chua-Tan is well-known for a number of roles she plays in… Continue reading

Most Read