News: Brockville Receives OMCIP Grant

(March 15, 2016) The City is delighted to announce it will receive a $325,000 grant under the Ontario Municipal Cycling Infrastructure Program.

In 2013, following extensive collaboration with a wide diversity of stakeholders, Ontario announced #CycleON: Ontario’s Cycling Strategy, a 20-year vision for capturing the health and economic benefits of cycling for purpose and for pleasure.

As part of the first round of projects in that plan, the Ministry of Transportation (MTO) established the $10 million Ontario Municipal Cycling Infrastructure Program (OMCIP) to help municipalities improve existing and build new cycling infrastructure.

The two-year program was launched on July 3, 2015. There was a great deal of interest from across the province, with almost 150 municipalities submitting expressions of interest. Municipalities were eligible to apply for funding for up to 50% of the total eligible costs of a cycling infrastructure project to a maximum amount of $325,000.

An evidence-based approach was used to select projects that most closely aligned with program objectives such as developing better cycling networks, promoting safety, encouraging innovation, supporting partnerships, collecting data and enabling cycling to be better recognized as a viable transportation mode.

A total of 51 municipalities, whose expressions of interest most effectively aligned with program objectives, were invited to submit full applications. Applications were evaluated and a number of projects were approved for funding under OMCIP, including Brockville’s.

Brockville’s project is a collaboration between the Brock Trail committee and the City’s cycling advisory committee, and comprises two “north-south linkage” projects. The first is an extension of the Brock Trail from the Mac Johnson Wildlife Area at Centennial Road, along the Buells Creek waterway to Laurier Blvd, with pedestrian crossovers.

The second project will create a multi-use off-road trail route from the existing trail at Parkedale Ave beside Buells Creek, along Parkedale Ave, Ormond St and Central Ave, to the existing trailhead beside Westminster Public School.

The provincial grant of $325,000 will cover about 1/3 of the estimated $950,000 project cost. The City will put up 1/3 of the funding from its committed 10-year capital budget for active transportation. The remaining 1/3 will be raised through grants, foundations, donations and in-kind contributions.

When completed, the Brock Trail’s off-road walking and cycling network will reach from north to south through the City. At the northern end, the Brock Trail will connect to the 11 km of trails at the Mac Johnson Wildlife Area.  At the waterfront, the Brock Trail is part of the Ontario Waterfront Trail, a 1,600 km cycling network rapidly growing its reach along the St. Lawrence River and Great Lakes.

Author: Alan Medcalf

Alan is a post-corporate, volunteer, community builder living in Brockville, Ontario. He seeks to create sustainable lifestyle advantage for the community by creating opportunities for more people to choose to walk and to ride bikes. He promotes the health, social, environmental and economic benefits of active mobility.