Kimberley e-Bike Grant Rides e-Recreation Movement
The City of Kimberley, British Columbia, has received a provincial grant worth over $800,000 to create an ebike mountain trail network. Project partner Kootenay Outdoor Recreation Enterprise (KORE) is leading the charge in developing the electric recreation segment of the regional tourism sector.
This week the province of British Columbia announced it would help the East Kootenay city of Kimberley “Electrify the Mountains.” An $851,522 grant provided by the province’s Tourism Dependent Community Fund, will see the development of a world-class, e-bike trail network. This project will not only boost the region’s tourism sector but also open up mountain biking opportunities for those who were unable to navigate mountain bike trails, such as persons with disabilities, older generations, and those with adapted equipment.
Electrify the Mountains is a recent example of the fast-growing e-Recreation (e-Rec) industry. Kootenay Outdoor Recreation Enterprise is a not-for-profit focused on creating outdoor recreation jobs in the Kootenay region of British Columbia. The adventurous and diverse landscapes of the Kootenay region provides the perfect setting for outdoor R&D for gear manufacturers of all types. You cannot replicate this outside test experience in a lab.
The plans the KORE has for e-Rec includes electric mountain bikes (e-bikes) and electric off-road vehicles (e-ORVs), such as snowmobiles and quads, and helping promote zero-emission e-Rec adventures by facilitating consumer and media demo days for e-ORV brands.
KORE will be hosting an e-bike and e-adaptive industry/media event this summer to support and raise the awareness of the “Electrify The Mountains” project. The first stage of the project will include the development of 36 kilometres of new and updated trails designed for Class 1, pedal-assist e-bikes and adaptive trikes. The project will also see signage installation, solar charging stations on the trails (see rendering above), and accessible washroom facilities by its completion in September 2022.
Project stakeholders hope to eventually see a network of e-bike and e-trike accessible trails throughout the Kootenay region – a first of its kind in North America. The aim is to develop a unique destination development product that will boost the economy, increase tourist visits, and create jobs post-pandemic and beyond.
“KORE is excited to be one of the founding collaborative partners in the ‘Electrify The Mountain, project,” says Kevin Pennock, KORE’s executive director. “KORE will be leading the charge in promoting and developing e-recreation adventures, both from the e-Rec industry and destination tourism perspectives.”
KORE is an economic development and diversification initiative managed by the Kootenay Outdoor Recreation Society located in Kimberley, BC. KORE has organized an industry cluster of all the outdoor recreation gear manufacturers and designers in the Kootenay region and to date has identified 40+ craft gear makers and designers who have organically started up production manufacturing and design within the Kootenays. KORE’s goal is to scale and attract growth within the industry cluster.
About “Electrify The Mountain”
“Electrify The Mountain” is a collaborative project, developed by four Kimberley non-profit groups including Kootenay Outdoor Recreation Enterprise (KORE), Tourism Kimberley, Kimberley Trails Society (KTS), and Sustainable Kimberley, along with the Kootenay Adaptive Sports Association (KASA) and Resorts of the Canadian Rockies (RCR) and in partnership with the City of Kimberley.