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November 24/04 5:10 am - Halton Region Trail Alert: A Call to Action and Important Meeting November 25th


Posted by Editoress on 11/24/04
 

Halton Region Trail Alert
Courtesy Lora Woolner, IMBA

A new draft management plan for the Agreement Forests of Halton Region could greatly diminish bicycling opportunities. We urge all mountain bikers who ride in the Halton Region to take action.

BACKGROUND

The agreement forests within Halton Region have been used for recreational riding by mountain bikers for close to 20 years.

Of particular interest are the tracts of land that form the northern and western boundaries of Hilton Falls Conservation Area. These include the Britton Tract, the Robertson Tract, the Turner Tract, the Mahon Tract, and the Currie Tract. The narrow singletrack trails that criss-cross these properties (referred to in the draft management plan as “spontaneous trails”) are potentially at risk.

As part of the draft management plan, a land use classification system has been developed, breaking the forest down into “management areas”. Much of the forest in the tracts of interest is being designated as either “restricted” (all recreational activity discouraged), or “passive” (Hunting, fishing, bird watching, hiking, and skiing permitted. Mountain biking and horseback riding discouraged.) See pages 21 and 22 of the draft management plan.

IMBA is calling for a reexamination of the potential recreational aspects of these properties, and is asking mountain bikers who ride in the Halton Region to do the same.

WHAT CAN YOU DO TO HELP?

1. Learn more about the plan:

Refer to the background summary information below and download the Draft Forest Management Plan from the Region of Halton website: www.region.halton.on.ca/ppw/PlanningRoads/Planning/Environment/RegForests/default.htm

2. Attend the open house:

There is an opportunity to attend an open house on the draft management plan on Thursday November 25 from 6:00pm to 9:00pm. Mountain bikers that use the agreement forests should be there to ask questions and voice their concerns.

WHAT: Open House on the Halton Regional Draft Forest Management Plan

WHEN: Thursday November 25
6:00pm-9:00pm (with presentation at 7:00pm)

WHERE: Milton Lions Hall (above the Milton Memorial Arena)
77 Thompson Road, Milton, ON

3. Provide comment:

The Committee is inviting comment from the public. All mailed comments must be postmarked by December 10, 2004.

Send comments by email to: attackp@region.halton.on.ca, or by mail to:

Paul Attack, MCIP, RPP, Senior Planner
Regional Municipality of Halton
1151 Bronte Road , Oakville, ON L6M 3L1

Additional questions can be directed to Mr. Attack at: 905-825-6161, ext. 7214

4. Talk to your councillor:

Contact the councillors in your ward, and let them know how valuable the trails in the agreement forests are to your recreation.

If you’re not from the Halton Region, make sure you tell let the committee know how important the agreement forests around Hilton Falls Conservation Area are as a riding destination for mountain bikers across Southern Ontario.

 


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