ATV riders in Queens County and beyond are going to have to wait another two weeks to find out if council approves them driving over the Trestle Trail Bridge.
In 2010, the Region of Queens Municipality outlined a list of items they wanted answers on if the Queens ATV Association was to use the bridge. The eight item list included creating policies and management for ATV riders, to gathering support from residents next to the proposed trail.
However some of those items, such as assuming liability for the bridge and doing an evaluation of the Trestle Trail Bridge are the responsibility of the municipality.
"Some of the requirements were inappropriate," said Mayor Christopher Clarke.
Councillor Brian Fralic also added the requirements of the previous motion didn't look at the whole picture. He said it primarily addressed the cons of the trail, but none of the pros. He wanted to see more of the benefits to the area and what other communities have done.
Since technically not all the items council wanted answers for in 2010 can be addressed, the motion will sit in limbo.
To proceed with any decision, the previous motions need to be rescinded, which will happen in council on Sept. 10. Council can then decide if they want to reintroduce a motion to allow ATV's use of the Trestle Trail Bridge and along the former rail line to Bog Road.
Mayor Clarke recognized this would be frustrating for the ATV Association, but it has to be done properly.
The ATV Association is looking to put a multi-use trail through Queens County, to connect to similar trails in Shelburne and Lunenburg County. The local group has created trails from Lunenburg County to Brooklyn, and from Broad River to Shelburne County.
The municipality can only decide on the path from and including the Trestle Trail Bridge to Bog Road.
The Queens ATV Association will still have other hurdles to pass in order to get a trail through Queens County. Both the Harley Umphrey Drive and the White Point Road do not have shoulders wide enough to accommodate ATV's.
Once beyond the jurisdiction of the Region of Queens, The ATV Association must still get approval for a route through Hunts Point and Summerville. Their goal is to use the former rail line, but there are issues with parts being designated for walking traffic only and others not allowed for anything at the moment. They also need to find a way to cross Broad River, after their application to use the rail line through Summerville Beach was rejected by the Department of Natural Resources.
Despite not being able to answer all the items on the 2010 motion, Region staff provided a report on what they could answer.
According to the report, there are concerns over policing the route as well. RCMP, Department of Natural Resource and the Region of Queens have very limited resources to effectively police a trail system. The local RCMP commander Cpl. Victor Whalen also advised against granting the request as well, due to public safety, noise concerns and having ATV's crossing several streets in Liverpool.
Part of the 2010 motion also required the ATV Association to secure permission from homeowners along the trail. Out of the 40 adjacent properties the association submitted 12 responses to council, four of those were against the trail. Recreation Director Norm Amirault added they have received five additional comments against the trail.