Monday, January 30, 2023

City Councillors pull plug on Six Mile Coulee Pathway project (Pathway 24)

Lethbridge City Council has killed the planned Six Mile Coulee Pathway project.

The plan was to upgrade a portion of the rugged trail adding a limestone shale, narrow pathway and some stairs. City Parks staff had said this was about allowing the public to have equitable access to Six Mile Coulee.

That, however wasn’t sitting well with local users, especially mountainbikers and trail runners.

City Councillor Blaine Hyggen introduced the motion Monday (June 15) to rescind the project, formally known as Pathway 24, from the current Capital Improvement Plan (CIP). He says the City Manager has now been asked to consult with coulee user groups to discuss a strategy, framework and partnership so local organizations and the City can work together to create a unique experience in the river valley.

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“So the groups that use these pathways, it’s important that they are the ones to help with the development and maybe even upkeep, offering suggestions, or future pathways,” says Hyggen.

Rescinding this project will also save the City nearly $1.8 million dollars in the current CIP.

Hyggen, an active cyclist himself who spends a lot of time using that area says it was the right decision by Council. “I know this is really a cliche, but if it’s not broken, don’t fix it. Obviously it’s fantastic the way it is”.

City Council was told in late May that there has been a lot of public consultation for years about the project. Parks Manager Dave Ellis said on May 28th, this plan was developed with extensive stakeholder engagement and the general public.

The still undeveloped trail stretches from Lethbridge College to the Oldman River and connects to other trails along the way.

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