Metro Vancouver has increased the size of the North Alouette Regional Greenway after buying 7.69 hectares of land.
The greenway, located in the northwest corner of Maple Ridge, bordering Pitt Meadows, includes a shared dike trail used for walking, cycling and horseback riding. It protects a section of the North Alouette River floodplain, including a rare lowland Sitka spruce ecosystem.
The new land parcel, acquired at a cost of $715,000 through the Metro Vancouver Regional Parks land acquisition fund, runs north from 136th Avenue and includes Cattell Brook, which provides salmon-rearing habitat and is a destination for canoeists and kayakers.
“The corridor along the North Alouette River provides park visitors many wonderful opportunities to enjoy scenic vistas of the river, mountains and agricultural areas, and it’s a great place to view wildlife,” said Maple Ridge Mayor Mike Morden.
“The city looks forward to continuing to work with Metro Vancouver to manage this important local and regional amenity.”
The greenway follows the North Alouette River, then connects to Tim’s Trail and Docksteader Trail in Silver Valley. Other connecting trails then lead to Golden Ears Provincial Park.
The greenway, together with the nearby Codd Wetlands Ecological Conservancy and Blaney Bog Regional Park Reserve, forms an assemblage of natural wetland habitats supporting several endangered species, such as Keen’s long-eared bat, the southern red-backed vole, and the Pacific water shrew, said a press release from Metro.
“We are pleased and excited to have secured such an ecologically rich piece of land which complements the floodplain areas already protected by the greenway,” said John McEwen, chair of Metro’s parks committee.
“This property contains important fish rearing and wildlife habitat, and is a key component of the Pacific Flyway.”
This land purchase advances Metro Vancouver Regional Parks’ mandate to protect the region’s important natural areas while allowing people to enjoy and learn about the natural environment, said the release.
• Metro Vancouver’s Regional Parks system covers 13,557 hectares, and includes 22 regional parks, three regional park reserves, two ecological conservancy areas, and five regional greenways.In 2018, Metro Vancouver doubled its annual contribution to the Regional Park Land Acquisition Fund to $7.57 million each year.