Parks Canada says construction on a new access trail through Peterborough’s Waverley Heights Municipal Park will begin next week.
For a number of years, Parks Canada used the park in the city’s northeast end to access the Thompson Bay dam. However, Parks Canada made a request to the city in 2019 to build an improved trail since the existing one was prone to potential flooding and larger maintenance vehicles couldn’t negotiate the steep grade to access the dam and Trent-Severn Waterway canal along with the new Peterborough Canal Trail from Lock 19 to Trent University.
A city staff report in 2019 noted that in the past Parks Canada had required access with large vehicles to drive through Waverley Park, located at 1189 Scollard Dr., often resulting in damage to the grass in the park, which also features a children’s playground for the neighbourhood.
City council in the fall of 2019 endorsed the new multi-use access trail, noting Parks Canada would cover all costs for construction of the three-metre limestone route.
On Thursday, Parks Canada announced that beginning the week of Sept. 26, safety fencing and signage will be installed and construction equipment will arrive on site. Excavation and grading will start in early October and will be completed in November.
Turf restoration and landscaping activities will be finalized in the spring of 2023, pending weather conditions.
“Access to most areas of the park including the playground equipment and basketball court are expected to remain open during construction,” Parks Canada stated. “No impacts to roadway traffic or navigation on the canal are anticipated.”
The new pathway will connect pedestrians and cyclists with the existing Thompson’s Bay Dam trail and also serve as an inspection and maintenance access route for the dam, Parks Canada said.