About the Trail

Discovery TrailDiscovery Trail is a paved 30+ kilometre, three metre wide, all-season corridor spanning through Abbotsford, connecting the east and west end of the community. It is surrounded by towering trees, scenic ponds and lush meadows. 

View Discovery Trail Map

 

Recreation Benefits
Discovery Trail is accessible to all members of the community and visitors, allowing for a wide range of recreational activities such as: walking, running, rollerblading, and bicycling. Along side the trail, users will find space for picnics, visiting with friends and family, and observing and photographing indigenous wildlife.

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Health, Transportation & Environmental Benefits
Discovery Trail is an alternative recreation transportation option, improving physical fitness and safety of all ages and abilities, reducing air pollution and conserving energy. The trail allows Abbotsford families to enjoy a beautiful local outdoor setting to walk, run, bicycle and rollerblade, instead of traveling in a vehicle to a long distance trail destination in another community. It is part of Abbotsford’s identity; a destination for residents and visitors.

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Project Leaders and Partnerships
Discovery Trail is a community driven initiative to promote active, healthy living. The project is led by a core group of community leaders and is supported by the City of Abbotsford and the Province of British Columbia. In 2007, the City received a provincial Local Motion grant for $1.1 million to develop Section 1 of Discovery Trail. In 2008, the City received an additional grant for $952,000 to develop Section 2. As part of the Local Motion funding agreement, the community must match the provincial government’s contribution. A Community Board, in partnership with members of the Aggregate Producers Association is working toward this goal. Continued involvement of businesses and citizens is greatly appreciated.

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Discovery Trail Project Design
The trail is 30+ km in length, 3 metres wide (proximity to water courses may require a slightly narrower width), with several grades to challenge all fitness levels. The physical works include:
  • general trail construction;
  • trail re-alignment;
  • site excavation to ensure grades are accessible;
  • slope stabilization; and
  • boardwalks and bridges.

Several materials were required to construct the trail, including: aggregate, concrete, asphalt, lumber and plants. To ensure the success of the trail’s development, Discovery Trail is divided into five sections, to allow for development in phases. This phased approach concentrates efforts; keeps the project manageable; and builds on successes.

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Benefits to the Community
Social Benefits

  • Pride and Identity: Discovery Trail fosters Abbotsford community pride, involvement and identity. Other communities that formed a trail identity include: Whistler’s Valley Trail, Victoria’s Galloping Goose; Kelowna’s Mission Trail and Richmond’s Dyke Trail.
  • Meeting Place: Trails provide an opportunity to interact with family and friends. Discovery Trail provides an opportunity to meet new people and learn about their backgrounds and experiences.
  • Building Partnerships: Construction of Discovery Trail built and fostered partnerships between: different levels of government; businesses; residents; and service groups. Being involved in a community project created a strong community connection.
  • Connecting Neighbourhoods: Trails knit neighbourhoods and existing facilities together. Discovery Trail connects schools, churches, parks, civic buildings, commercial areas, and natural areas.

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Environmental Benefits


  • Environmental Protection: Trails protect water, air and noise quality. Trails preserve vegetation which in turn, moderates temperatures and filters out pollutants.
  • Wildlife Corridors: Discovery Trail provides wildlife corridors and contribute to biological diversity.
  • Alternative Transportation: Discovery Trail provides an alternative leisure-based transportation route.
  • Stewardship: Discovery Trail provides opportunities for stewardship and education.
  • Buffer Zones: Discovery Trail serves as important buffer zones between urban development and sensitive natural habitats and waterways. These natural areas can protect water resources, shelter plants and wildlife, and allow alternatives to automobile use.

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Economic Benefits

  • Positive Impact on Property Values: Close proximity to a trail system has a positive impact on property values. Real estate agents report that home buyers are prepared to pay more for a property that is near such an amenity.
  • Positive Impact on Property Enjoyment: Discovery Trail provides a new way to experience existing assets.
  • Lowering Health Care Costs: Discovery Trail helps to lower stress and health care costs by encouraging physical activity and relaxation.
  • Generating Tourism Revenue: Walking, hiking, bicycling, rollerblading, and wildlife viewing are popular tourist activities. Discovery Trail provides opportunities for these experiences and bring revenue into our community. Abbotsford is known as “Sport Town Canada”. Discovery Trail is a unique addition to our diverse selection of existing sport venues.
  • Attracting Residents and Businesses: Trails encourage property value appreciation and are a wonderful source for recreation and entertainment. These factors draw people to reside in the community;increase tourism; further business development; and ignite employment growth.

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Getting Involved
For more information on how to participate in this project contact:
Parks, Recreation & Culture
604-859-3134