The first section of the Waterfront Trail, Hamilton to Trenton officially opened in 1995. Since then communities along the Canadian shores of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River have been working to connect their communities to the Waterfront Trail. In 1996, the Trust extended the Trail to Niagara-on-the-Lake and began signing portions of the Trail east of Quinte West. In 2007, the Trail was officially extended to the Quebec border where it now connects with la Route Verte, Quebec's network of cycling trails.
The Waterfront Trail stretches from Niagara-on-the-Lake to the Quebec border, along the shores of Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River in Ontario, Canada. The Trail includes:
182 parks and natural areas
152 arts and culture heritage attractions
37 major annual waterfront festivals
170 marinas and yacht clubs
Today I put my bike in the back of my van and drove to the Waterfront trail section near my home.
Some parts of the trail are still under construction. 780 km (485 miles) designated (signed) 120 km (75 miles) undesignated (signage yet to be installed and/or gaps in alignment)
The Waterfront Trail is a multi-use (pedestrian, cycling, rollerblading) recreation trail that is used by people of all walks of life. The Trail is also used for commuting purposes (24% of Trail users use it to commute regularly).
Looking East. The surface of the Trail varies by municipality but mainly consists of 30% off road dedicated path and 70% on residential streets or on the shoulders of major roads. Most sections are paved but some areas have gravel or packed limestone.
One of the trail bridges which crosses a deep ravine. Looking west.
Taking a break.
The Trust is currently coordinating an application for major infrastructure funding along the Waterfront Trail. With the success of the Canada-Ontario Infrastructure Program (completed 2007), which brought $9 million of investment from the federal and provincial governments to the waterfront, the Trust has begun marketing a new proposal to senior levels of government.