In April 2019, the Regional District of Central Kootenay (RDCK) announced the closure of the boardwalk section of the Galena Trail due to structural and safety concerns for trail users.
The boardwalk replacement project is now underway and proceeding under the sponsorship of the Kootenay Adaptive Sports Association (KASA), which has been instrumental in promoting and advocating for trails that are specifically designed to meet the needs of adaptive cyclists, families, seniors and anyone looking to explore recreational opportunities.
KASA is a non-profit organization incorporated in 2010, previously named the Kootenay Sufferfest Society, and responsible for hosting the annual Idaho Peak Ultra and 10k, Burton Amazing Race and Nakusp Suffercross CX. KASA has grown significantly over the last three years to become regional in scope with board members and representation across several communities. In 2018, KASA partnered with the Nakusp and Area Bike Society to successfully develop the network of adaptive trails at Mt. Abriel, north of Nakusp.
Working in conjunction with RDCK Regional Parks and Operations, KASA became the designated project holder and manager for the boardwalk replacement project. KASA qualifies for funding under the Work BC’s job creation partnership (JCP), funded by the Government of Canada and the Province of British Columbia.
The JCP supports opportunities to gain meaningful work experience and skills enhancement by providing funding to those organizations with community benefits while creating jobs. An integral part of the JCP program is skills enhancement and team development of local workforces.
For this particular project, six local workers have been hired to build on their skill sets, undergo the safety and WorkSafe training tailored to the nature and type of construction work required. Safety is paramount to the success of this project. Helicopters will be used to bring materials to the worksite and in the installation of the prefabricated boardwalk spans.
The boardwalk will be widened to meet adaptive standards for accessibility. In addition to the JCP funding for construction materials, training and labour, funds for the project have been obtained through RDCK ($20,000), Columbia Basin Trust Trail Enhancement ($25,000) along with in-kind support from the North Slocan Trails Society, Shon’s Bike Ski Stay, the YRB, Silverton Building Supply, Silver Ridge Earthworks and Arrow Lake Equipment Rentals.
This boardwalk section of the Galena Trail will remain closed for the duration of the project. Site preparation and demolition of the existing boardwalk and the old rail trestle footings commenced on Aug. 6, making this section of the trail completely impassable until the completion of the project.
Signs and worksite barriers have been erected. The project team is targeting December for all construction work and engineering work to be completed. The lower section of the Galena Trail, from Denver Siding to Rosebery, is fully open and users are encouraged to use this section of the trail, as well as numerous trails in the New Denver and surrounding area.