The City of Swift Current will be applying for federal funding to help better connect the city's pathways.
The plan is to apply to the federal Active Transport Fund. This fund is set to contribute a potential $400 million to a modal shift away from vehicular transportation in cities to active transport. This fund is in support of Canada's National Active Transportation Strategy.
Mitch Minken, the general manager of infrastructure and operations for the City of Swift Current, presented the topic of applying to the fund in order to help fund the continued expansion of the Chinook Pathway.
"The proposed pathway will address a major gap in the mobility network within the Northeast area," Minken stated. "The Trans-Canada Highway and Memorial Drive are constraints for pedestrians as they both create a barrier."
This expansion would bring Swift Current another step closer together, bringing the path under the Highway Four bridge just south of the Memory Gardens Cemetery.
"We're probably going to need to extend the embankment to have a ledge to have our pathway on, but that'll be part of the construction."
From there, the plan is to go back past the cemetery and connect to the other pathway section across the Trans-Canada Highway.
The Chinook Pathway is a winding pavement ribbon that wraps around the city, tieing together its many neighbourhoods. It weaves through many beautiful parks and public spaces, delivering foot traffic to both scenic and civic destinations.
City council approved the plan to apply for the fund, hoping to receive $329,319, the maximum amount the fund would cover for this project. The project would involve approximately one kilometre of new pathway, installation of lighting and park furniture along its length, landscaping, fencing and various plantings.
The City of Swift Current would contribute $219,546 of its own money to this project, bringing the total to $548,865. That would come out to a 60/40 split between the federal government and the City.
Minken expects to have this addition completed later this year.
"This will complete this section. There may always be somewhere else that we want to connect, but this will give us connectivity from the North all the way down to the South."