At a grand opening and ribbon-cutting ceremony this morning, the Peterson Creek Multi-use Path was officially unveiled as the “Xget'tem' Trail”, in recognition of Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc’s traditional place name for the area. The Xget'tem' Trail, which means “deep valley”, is marked by signage at either entrance to the trail that details the importance of oral tradition and knowledge keepers.
Mayor Ken Christian, joined by Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc Councillor Jeanette Jules, announced the new name, which was followed by traditional drumming by Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc drummer Brandon Daniels. The ceremony was attended by both incoming and outgoing City Councillors, Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc Council members, local user groups, and the media.
"The City of Kamloops is extremely proud to jointly announce the traditional naming of this impressive new multi-use pathway with Tk'emlups te Secwépemc. Xget'tem' Trail bridges the Sahali neighbourhood with the downtown core and also bridges the history of the Secwepemc peoples with current and future residents and visitors to the city,” said Mayor Christian. “Seeing the trail name on signs and maps will remind us of our shared history in this region. The City also wishes to acknowledge the financial support of the provincial government who significantly contributed to this important piece of new infrastructure in our alternative transportation network. We look forward to high traffic on this pathway by a wide range of users."
"Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc is very pleased to have been asked to name the new pathway in Peterson Creek Park. We are grateful for the contributions of our elders, knowledge keepers, and staff who provided the Xget'tem' Trail name and oral history of the area. Sharing our culture with the greater Kamloops community and visitors through the naming of this trail brings us closer to understanding the past and building a strong future together. This path not only serves to enhance the cultural awareness of the land, it provides an important transportation link in the city," said Kúkpi7 Seymour.
The pathway, completed in late-September, connects Summit Drive at Sahali Secondary School with downtown near Glenfair Drive. The 3 m-wide, 1.7 km long paved pathway provides walkers and cyclists with a safe and direct link between Sahali and downtown, complete with rest areas, lighting, and signage.
The pathway has long since been identified as a key connection within the City’s active transportation network, and many user groups are excited to be able to take advantage of the shortened and appealing route between downtown and Sahali. “We’ve already had many people making use of the path since it opened last month,“ said Liam Baker, the City’s Utilities Engineer. “From cyclists to walkers, the amount of positive feedback we’ve received has been really encouraging. We have installed a path user counting system and will be able to publish cyclist and pedestrian volume numbers in the coming months.”
The pathway was funded, in part, by a $1 million grant from the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure’s Bike BC program, with the remaining $2.7 million coming from the City’s active transportation budget.
"I know cyclists and pedestrians want to see safe and accessible multi-use paths in their communities, and that’s why the B.C. government is investing in cycling and active transportation throughout B.C.,” said Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Claire Trevena. “This new Peterson Creek pathway is a great example of that investment, as it encourages people to get out of their cars, get active and experience this beautiful area.”