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Proposed Laurentian Escarpment Conservation Area
Trails Plan Unveiled

(North Bay, June 1, 2018) A new proposal for the trail system within the Laurentian Escarpment Conservation Area was unveiled this week at a public meeting by the North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority.

“The end goal of the proposal is to create a high-quality multi-use trail network that would provide healthy recreational opportunities for residents and visitors as well as provide the infrastructure that could support future events and associated economic opportunities while respecting the ecological sensitivities of the escarpment,” said Dave Mendicino, NBMCA Chair.

The Trails Proposal contains three recommendations:

• 20 km of multi-use cross country trails that include the Richardson Ridge and McNutt Family trail and an additional 12 km of trails currently in use but not part of the existing trail system managed by NBMCA

• a bike park

• five downhill bike trails adjacent to the ski hill

“I think it’s fantastic. It’s a matter of getting everybody together, formulating a plan, and moving forward,” said Tony Morbito, a long time Laurentian trails user and member of the Laurentian Escarpment Conservation Area Trails Advisory Committee. “I think this is a good starting point.”

The first recommendation is to increase the amount of NBMCA approved and maintained multi-use trails on the Escarpment from 8.3 kilometers to approximately 20 kilometers. As part of this process some existing sections of trail would be relocated to avoid areas that have been identified as ecologically sensitive.

“The 30 kilometers of trails that exist there now don’t take into account the needs of the wildlife we share the Escarpment with,” said Troy Storms, Manager of Lands and Stewardship at NBMCA, “We need to reroute some of the trails around sensitive areas and focus on 20 kilometers of the best trails and manage those, creating a high quality trail system everyone can enjoy.”

The community bike park is proposed for NBMCA property on Ski Club Road, across from the lower chalet. This bike park would involve a large pumptrack, kid’s learning loop, jump trails, a spectator area, and progression skills loops.

“We’re looking for community feedback on this proposal. How should the trails be rerouted around the sensitive areas? Where are the preferred access points? Which of the three recommendations should be a priority? Who is interested in being part of a volunteer trail
maintenance crews?” said Sue Buckle, Manager of Communications and Outreach.

The full Laurentian Escarpment Conservation Area Trails Proposal can be viewed on the
NBMCA website at http://www.nbmca.on.ca/site/indexd.asp?id=145. Any questions,
recommendations, or concerns are welcome and can be emailed to sue.buckle@nbmca.ca.

The North Bay-Mattawa Conservation Authority was founded in 1972 by the Province of Ontario
and its 10 member municipalities. A non-profit organization, the NBMCA works closely with the
public to balance human needs with environmental needs throughout the region’s watershed
areas. The NBMCA is one of 36 Conservation Authorities who are members of Conservation
Ontario.

You can follow NBMCA on facebook.com/NBMCA and twitter @theNBMCA. Website:
www.nbmca.ca