Nanaimo, BC – Trans Canada Trail (TCT) has announced a $200,000 gift from TimberWest Forest Corp., which will support new improvements along The Great Trail in British Columbia.

TimberWest first gave $100,000 in 2017, which helped connect a significant portion of The Great Trail on South Vancouver Island. Now, today’s generous donation will support two further Trail enhancement projects along the Cowichan Valley Trail, from Halalt First Nation to the town of Ladysmith, in partnership with the Cowichan Valley Regional District.

The Trail in B.C. currently stretches over 3,000 kilometres, profiling the province’s stunning landscapes and coastal areas. Now, TCT and its partners are focused on enhancing and nurturing Trail sections across Canada for future generations.

“Thanks to donors like TimberWest, the Trail was officially connected in 2017 and became the longest network of recreational, multi-use trails in the world,” said Valerie Pringle, Co-Chair of the TCT Foundation Board. “TimberWest is a committed supporter of The Great Trail and their community. Their continued support will allow both locals and visitors to enjoy the incredible landscapes that the Cowichan Valley Trail has to offer,” she added.

“We are pleased to continue our support of The Great Trail to provide visitors and residents the opportunity to experience the natural beauty of the forests where we live and work,” said Jeff Zweig, President and CEO of TimberWest.“The Great Trail not only promotes safe, healthy recreational access, but symbolically unifies us by connecting communities and people across the Island, the Province, and the Country.”

Work is already underway on the Saltair Rail with Trail, which will connect the towns of Chemainus and Ladysmith via a 4.7-kilometre greenway. It will also include the construction of a creek crossing and an all-weather gravel surface. Once completed in 2018, this project will create a safer experience for pedestrians and cyclists.

In 2019, TimberWest’s gift will also support the local Trail group as they create a new 4.3-kilometre greenway of the Cowichan Valley Trail in Chemainus, connecting rural neighbourhoods and Indigenous communities. This important work will bypass the current roadway along Chemainus Road, establishing another continuous greenway of 20 kilometres that creates a connection linking Westholme, the village core of Chemainus, Ladysmith and Halalt First Nation.

“TimberWest continues to demonstrate its commitment to enhancing the quality of life in the Cowichan Valley, and this latest contribution is another example of the company really stepping up and walking the talk,” said Jon Lefebure, Mayor of the Municipality of North Cowichan and CVRD Board Chair.

“As we work towards the completion of nearly nine kilometres of Rail with Trail projects in the Chemainus and Saltair areas in 2018 and 2019, we are thankful for this corporate partnership and the work of the staff at Trans Canada Trail.”

TimberWest’s generous gift reflects their philosophy of responsible stewardship and their commitment to local communities where they live, work and play. TCT believes that connection was just the beginning of the Trail’s journey and is delighted that TimberWest agrees.