FROM A1: ON THE ROAD

The Western Star - - CLOSE TO HOME - Source: [email protected]­ern­star.com Twit­ter: WS_GaryKean

While that route doesn’t in­clude Con­fed­er­a­tion Drive, the by­law will con­tain pro­vi­sions to al­low spe­cial per­mis­sion for groups to ac­cess other ar­eas of town upon re­quest.

That’s what Cormier ex­pects he’ll be do­ing this sum­mer in or­der to get his group to their ho­tel on Con­fed­er­a­tion Drive.

He’s ex­cited to see Cor­ner Brook fol­low­ing the ex­am­ple of nu­mer­ous other com­mu­ni­ties across Canada that be­lieves al­low­ing ATVs into town will pro­vide an eco­nomic boost.

“I’ll be rent­ing 80 rooms for around 150 or 160 peo­ple this sum­mer and they will all have to eat, buy gas and maybe need re­pairs or re­place some of their sup­plies,” said Cormier.

He hopes the city will even­tu­ally ex­pand the des­ig­nated routes so he won’t need to get spe­cial per­mis­sion to ac­cess Con­fed­er­a­tion Drive.

“If you’re go­ing to give per­mis­sion to ride through town, then you should ben­e­fit from it as much as pos­si­ble,” he said.

Craig Bor­den owns Rugged Edge, a Cor­ner Brook com­pany that sells ATVs and of­fers tours. He said Cormier is just one of many tour guides com­ing to the area this year, not to men­tion nu­mer­ous peo­ple com­ing on their own with no guide.

Un­til now, most ATV riders tour­ing west­ern New­found­land ei­ther end their trips be­fore hav­ing to go through Cor­ner Brook or pay to have their ma­chines trans­ported around the city in or­der to con­tinue their ad­ven­tures.

Bor­den said all that ATV traf­fic be­ing able to get through the city will def­i­nitely help Cor­ner Brook’s econ­omy. It could also pro­vide an­other on­shore ex­cur­sion op­por­tu­nity for cruise ship vis­i­tors, he added.

While snow­mo­bil­ing is re­ally Rugged Edge’s bread and but­ter, Bor­den said the num­ber of in­quiries he fields about ATVs tour­ing through the Cor­ner Brook area far out­num­bers those about snow­mo­bil­ing.

“I’ve had, hon­est to god, 100 to one in­quiries about ATVs com­pared to snow­mo­biles,” said Bor­den. “The amount of peo­ple in­ter­ested in this has my mind blown.”

While there has al­ready been a lit­tle so­cial me­dia back­lash about the city per­mit­ting ATVs in the down­town, Bor­den said the mod­ern ma­chines are just as road­wor­thy as mo­tor­cy­cles and thinks it’s just a mat­ter of time be­fore peo­ple re­al­ize they won’t be a prob­lem on city streets.

“I don’t think you’re go­ing to see many lo­cals go­ing back and forth all day long be­cause most peo­ple who own ATVs don’t want to be driv­ing them on pave­ment any­way,” he said. “These ac­cess points will mostly just be used by peo­ple just try­ing to get through the city.”

He does expect there will be some peo­ple who will leave from strate­gic lo­ca­tions along the route within the city and head to their cab­ins on ATV now, rather than drive their cars and trucks to their get­aways.

Like Cormier, Bor­den would like to see the routes ex­panded so ATVs can bet­ter ac­cess ar­eas such as Con­fed­er­a­tion Drive. He noted that be­ing able to get to Massey Drive, for in­stance, would then link riders with the west­ern side of the city to the trails that link up with Mar­ble Moun­tain and Pasadena.

Some of the ex­ist­ing trails on the out­skirts of Cor­ner Brook were de­signed for snow­mo­bil­ing, but Bor­den said there shouldn’t be too much work re­quired to make them ATV-ac­ces­si­ble.

Cor­ner Brook Mayor Jim Par­sons said the ini­tial des­ig­nated route is a bit of a pi­lot project and the city is def­i­nitely go­ing to con­sider other des­ig­nated routes in the fu­ture. While snow­mo­biles will not be per­mit­ted on this route, Par­sons said the city is look­ing at other ar­eas of the city where snow­mo­bile ac­cess may be al­lowed.

“We’re al­ready hear­ing a lot of buzz about this,” said Par­sons. “When we did a test run of the route, peo­ple no­ticed and we’re al­ready hear­ing about ATV tour groups chang­ing their plans to stop here in Cor­ner Brook.

“I think it will be a novel op­por­tu­nity for riders com­ing into Cor­ner Brook to be able to stop for sushi, or stay in a ho­tel and maybe go to a bar and see some en­ter­tain­ment.”

Keith Gould­ing, pres­i­dent of the Greater Cor­ner Brook Board of Trade, said lo­cal busi­nesses al­ways wel­come new ways to get more peo­ple in their doors and thinks this is a good move for Cor­ner Brook.

“I like the idea of this cor­ri­dor be­cause it does keep it mostly away from res­i­den­tial ar­eas,” said Gould­ing. “Peo­ple don’t want ATVs in their back­yards, but hav­ing them go along busi­ness ar­eas is go­ing to be great.”

Gould­ing said there may even be op­por­tu­ni­ties for new busi­ness ideas to crop up along the route that will cater to the new stream of traf­fic.

SOME FUR­THER DE­TAILS ABOUT THE NEW ATV ROUTE

• Like any other ve­hic­u­lar traf­fic, ATV riders on the des­ig­nated routes in Cor­ner Brook will be re­quired to have a valid driver’s li­cence and li­a­bil­ity insurance pol­icy. Any ATV used on city streets will have to be road­wor­thy, in­clud­ing hav­ing its orig­i­nal ex­haust equip­ment in good work­ing or­der to pre­vent any ex­ces­sive or un­usual noise

• Driv­ers of ATVs will have to obey the “rules of the road” as de­scribed in Part V of the pro­vin­cial High­way Traf­fic Act.

- The des­ig­nated routes will only be open to ATV traf­fic from June 1 to Oct. 31.

• ATVs will only be per­mit­ted on the route be­tween 7 a.m. and 10 p.m.

• Speed lim­its will be posted, re­quir­ing ATVs to be op­er­ated no faster than 40 kilo­me­tres per hour on high­ways and 20 kilo­me­tres per hour on trails or path­ways.

• The only sec­tion of path­way in­cluded be­tween Bal­lam Bridge and Hil­liard’s Road will be the short sec­tion of path lo­cated be­tween the end of Pier Road and Grif­fin Drive. Oth­er­wise, ATVs must be driven on the des­ig­nated road­ways.

City of Cor­ner Brook

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