Ottawa South residents and guests can enjoy the soothing sights and sounds of nature along the newly upgraded Chapman Mills Conservation Area trails and boardwalk. Dignitaries and special guests gathered at the site today to celebrate and help with the installation of the final pieces of wooden boardwalk.
Owned by the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA), Chapman Mills is an exceptional example of conservation parkland with river shoreline, wetland and flood plain areas that are unique and vital to our local community.
“Chapman Mills is one of Ottawa’s most ecologically significant natural areas,” said Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA) Chair Lyle Pederson. “It's our hope that with this newly upgraded trail, residents of all ages and abilities will be able to enjoy this wonderful shoreline environment."
Over 600 metres of boardwalk have been widened and now include turnaround areas to allow for increased accessibility. Some 50 metres of trails have also been upgraded to offer a smoother surface and gradual grading (where possible) to allow for improved recreational use. Steeper areas do exist, but now include guardrails and barriers for improved safety. Interpretive signs were also installed at both ends of the trail. New erosion control features will also ensure path stability and longevity for years to come.
These upgrades were completed over the past two years thanks to funding of up to $32,000 from the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, through the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program, and donations from Movati Athletic Group and the Rideau Valley Conservation Foundation.
“The Chapman Mills Conservation Area project is a great example of what the Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program is all about,” said Chandra Arya, Member of Parliament for Nepean. “Supporting improvements to the places where families go to spend quality time together is an ideal way to invest in our communities so that they can be enjoyed by Canadians for years to come.”
“Movati Athletic Group is delighted to support outdoor recreation and promote physical activity of all kinds,” said Sean Whittal, Area Director, Movati Athletic Group who unfortunately could not attend but sent greetings. “We hope these improvements will allow everyone to experience the beauty of nature and environmental conservation first hand.”
“This project builds on years of work, including community and business investments,” said Jason Kelly, Chair of the Rideau Valley Conservation Foundation. “We are delighted to see these investments in popular community areas, especially those as unique and as valuable as at Chapman Mills.”
This 23-acre parcel of conservation land is located on the west bank of the Rideau River on Prince of Wales Drive between Winding Way and Lodge Road. The site boasts a picnic shelter, scenic lookouts along the trail, walkways and boardwalks that lead pedestrians on a 1.8 kilometre stroll through sensitive and beautiful habitats.
The Canada 150 Community Infrastructure Program is providing up to $300 million nationally to support the renovation, expansion and improvement of existing community and cultural infrastructure as part of the Government of Canada’s activities to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary of confederation in 2017.
Operating since 1997, Movati Athletic Group has four facilities in Ottawa (a fifth opening in late fall 2017 in Nepean) and employs over 500 full-time and part-time employees.
The Rideau Valley Conservation Authority (RVCA) is one of 36 Conservation Authorities in the Province of Ontario. RVCA looks to work with the watershed community to protect, restore and restore the Rideau watershed.
The Rideau Valley Conservation Foundation is a registered environmental charity working to help protect and conserve the lands and waters of the valley of the Rideau River in Eastern Ontario.