Urgent Action required: Proposed Speedvale underpass trail at risk

Hello all,

You may have heard of the proposed Speedvale underpass trail for Guelph. In 2015, council  unanimously supported the planning of this trail.

This trail is proposed for those going North/South along the Trans Canada Trail, and then moving freely under the newly built Speedvale bridge. The trail was proposed as a way of having a continuous, barrier free, safe active transportation network for seniors, families, and everyone in between, without having to cross busy traffic at Speedvale.

Despite the Consultant’s report  conclusion that the trail, along with mitigating efforts,  will result in no negative impact to the significant woodland, or to any endangered species, city staff is recommending that no further studies be done, mainly due to environmental concerns.

Staff also cited safety concerns as a factor because of flooding potential. Flood hazards are a risk with any trail, yet trails are still built in all jurisdictions in floodplains. Furthermore, the safety concerns of crossing busy Speedvale Avenue to get to the other side of the trail, have been ignored in their report.

If the new Speedvale Bridge is built with no accommodation for an underpass trail as the staff is currently recommending,  then there will be no chance of a trail under the bridge for 50 + years.  It is now or never for this vote to take place.

The staff recommendation to reject any further study of the Speedvale underpass will go before council at the Committee of the Whole at City Hall this Monday, Oct. 2 at 2pm.

GCAT will be urging council to continue  moving forward to allow an underpass trail to become part of Guelph’s Active Transportation network.

If you wish to show your concern,  please consider delegating or writing a letter to city council (clerks@guelphca. Deadline is 10 am Friday morning) If you are free on Monday afternoon, it is very good for council to see many people in council chambers who support the underpass.

For more information, please contact info@gcat.ca . Thank you.

Come join us for a Tweed Bicycle Ride, Sunday Oct. 1!

Get your bike and finest Tweed  dusted off for Guelph’s second annual Tweed Ride, taking place on Sunday Oct. 1, 1-3pm.  Come dressed in your tweeds or old-timey clothes! We’ll take a leisurely 7km bike ride through some of the city’s finest locations and trails. Admission is free!

Tweed Rides are a worldwide sensation that started in London in the fall of 2009. The organizers thought that it would be fun to have a slower paced “cosmopolitan ride with a bit of style.” So they dressed in tweeds and rode their bikes through London streets.  Now Tweed Rides exist from Tokyo to Finland!

For our ride, we’ll meet at the Arboretum and bike toward the University of Guelph Campus, enjoying the beautiful fall colours.  We’ll stop at the University Bike Centre for refreshments, then ride through University Village on the way to the beautiful Royal River Trail. We’ll finish the ride at the Royal City Brewing Company, where we’ll celebrate the “spirit of a bygone era”, where cycling was more than just for sport.

Participants will have the opportunity to win prizes, such as those for the best dressed male and female as well as the coolest bike. While all bicycles are acceptable, vintage bicycles are encouraged. Sponsors included Speed River Bicycle, Wike, Royal City Brewing Co., Speed River Paddling and Guelph Coalition for Active Transportation. This event is being hosted by the Guelph Hiking Club.

Please meet at the Arboretum Centre, College Avenue East, at 12:45 for registration and to sign a waiver.  Ample bike and vehicle parking is available across from the Arboretum Information Centre.

For more information or to RSVP, please contact info@gcat.ca sgates14@hotmail.com