Ottawa Valley Recreational Trail To Become Multi-Use Trail?

April 28, 2017 by

Lanark County’s economic development committee recommended Wednesday that county council move ahead with a joint management plan for the Ottawa Valley Recreational Trail involving Lanark and Renfrew counties and Papineau-Cameron Township.

The municipalities own the former CPR rail bed which runs 296 km from Mattawa to Smiths Falls.

Interest in the future of the trail is high. CAO Kurt Greaves reported high turnouts at open houses held this winter. He said he’s received 80 comment sheets and 600 emails, noting that “people are very divided on the issue of motorized use on the trail.”

Some want the trail to be used for walking and cycling, while others want to be able to use ATVs and snowmobiles, as well. Greaves noted the towns of Arnprior and Renfrew have voted to allow all-terrain vehicles in certain areas of the towns and on the OVRT. Renfrew County and Papineau-Cameron Township are both supporting a multi-use trail format.

In Lanark County, Beckwith and Montague townships as well as Carleton Place have passed motions supporting a multi-use trail. Mississippi Mills is forming a task force to determine which side it will come down on.