A bridge that has been deemed unsafe in the Williams Lake River Valley could be soon replaced through the efforts of the Williams Lake Daybreak Rotary Club.
“We really didn’t have a new project that we could identify so we talked about the Valley as we’ve done work in the Valley before,” said President Sheila Mortensen after Tuesday’s regular council meeting.
“So we went to see Des and he said the bridge-we need a new bridge, and he thought perhaps that Daybreak Rotary could accomplish that.”
Desi Cheverie with Recreation Sites and Trails BC wrote that the footbridge is integral to the connection of the Spokey Hollow Trail network to the City of Williams as well as to the entire west side area including the Westridge subdivision.
“The Williams Lake River Valley is a very important part of the public recreation infrastructure and attracts both tourists and locals alike,” he said in a Nov. 29 letter to Mortensen.
“We hope you are successful in your applications and look forward to working with you on future projects.”
Mortensen said Rotary is planning to put $10,000 towards the replacement of the bridge and is currently seeking to secure funding through grant applications including NDIT, the Community Forest, and the Province. She estimates the costs of labor and material at $60,000.
Council referred Mortensen’s request for $10,000 in financial support to the Central Cariboo Joint Planning Committee as Mayor Walt Cobb said there could be $133,000 available through Cariboo Strong.
“We don’t usually deal with giving money in the middle of a term or in the middle of a budget year. There is a process in applying for grants, but it is also of my opinion this should probably go to the Central Cariboo Joint Planning Committee rather than just Williams Lake,” he said.
“I don’t think we’ve spent much out of it yet so that’s why it needs to go to Central Cariboo Joint Planning because they’re the ones that make the decision on that funding so there might be money sitting there already if it’s approved.”
Mortensen said that she would like to see the project start in May.
“I’m going to be fighting for it,” she said.
“My term is up in June so my donation to the club is this one.”