Note to the Members of Island Trails
As referred to in our last newsletter, the Government of Prince Edward Island had been approached by the PEI Trail Riders with a proposal for a Pilot Program which would enable horses to ride on the main trail bed of three 15 kilometre sections of the Confederation Trail. The proposed sections are from O’Leary to Murray Road on the Main Line; Emerald to Freetown on the Main Line; and Georgetown Road to Selkirk Road Rte. 23 on the Murray Harbour Line.
At our meeting with the Deputy Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure we were asked for our views on this proposal. As we had a copy of the proposal we were able to go through it in detail and pointed out that we felt the proposal was short-sighted, bad for cyclists and walkers on the trail, not at all safe due to the interaction of dogs, walkers, cyclists, and horses on the trail, and will inevitably lead to poor outcomes.
We then found out we were not really at the meeting to discuss the merits or shortcomings of the proposal. Rather it was to inform us the pilot was going to go ahead beginning on 15 August 2021 and would last 90 days.
In the original proposal we read that the PEI Trailriders would be in charge of evaluating the success of the pilot and we expressed serious misgivings about this process. We were reassured this was not the case and it would be Transportation and Infrastructure who would carry out the evaluation. However, when asked what the criteria are for judging the pilot’s success or failure, we were told the criteria were forthcoming. We understood this to mean that they had not yet been written.
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