Once open, this ecologically sensitive land in Coquitlam will be 1.5 times larger than Stanley Park. Widgeon Marsh Regional Park is currently closed but a draft management plan is in the works. It will be open for public comment this Summer.
The nature reserve is situated in Coquitlam, just north of Minnekhada Regional Park. It sits on 621-hectares (1,535 acres) of wetlands on the west side of the Pitt River.
Since 1992, the property has been on a reserve and hasn’t been open for public use. But the draft management plan is looking at a long-term vision for the park. Which looks at how to protect the sensitive wetlands and native forests—while also allowing people access to the area. It’s a serene forested mountain landscape that many will enjoy once open.
They’re also looking at supporting traditional First Nations uses to protect the habitat. With the goal of trying to lessen any disturbances to wildlife living in the area.
Once complete it will have a lot of exciting attractions in each of the park’s areas for Metro Vancouver nature lovers. But there’s some work that needs to be done first:
Widgeon Marsh Regional Park
- Main Trail: Paved trail from Lower Landing to the Meadow, widening the entry road from the entrance to the Lower Landing, parking lot driveways, upgrades to the main trail / service road from the meadow to the north end of the park, power pole upgrades from the entrance to the lower landing.
- Meadow: Hiking trails, bike rack, pond restoration, landscaping, picnic tables, picnic shelter, amphitheatre safety enhancements, gate, upper falls viewing area, seasonal bird blind, kiosk, waste bins, benches, viewing tower.
- Cove: Multi-use and hiking trails with viewpoints.
- Lower Landing: Parking, wetland loop trail, bike rack, water fountain, picnic shelter, picnic tables, waste bins, gate, group programming area, landscaping, habitat restoration.
- Gateway: Parking, spit trail with viewpoint, wetland loop trail, non-motorized launch, signage, habitat restoration, picnic tables, waste bins, new gate, landscaping.
The park’s major development stage will happen between 2021 to 2022. The 5-year financial plan for the park includes $500,000 for the design of phase one of the park’s development in 2020. And $6-million for base park development over 2021 and 2022—with funding coming from the Regional Parks Land Acquisition reserve.
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