Shawnigan Village Rail Trail

Shawnigan Rail Trail sketch

The Cowichan Valley Regional District (CVRD) is proceeding with the construction of a 350-metre section (Phase 1) of the Shawnigan Village Rail Trail between Elsie Miles Park and Shawnigan Wharf Park. This multi-use pathway features a compacted gravel surface suitable for all ages and abilities.

Construction of the pathway will start in November, 2018 and is expected to be completed in early 2019. To ensure your safety and that of workers on the project site, do not enter the construction area and obey posted signs at the site.

Continuation of this accessible pathway along the rail corridor from Shawnigan Wharf Park to Old Mill Park and between Mason’s Beach and Elsie Miles Park remains subject to the completion of additional trail engineering design and environmental impact assessment studies. This work is to be done at the direction of the CVRD Board in response to feedback received about the proposed Shawnigan Village Rail Trail pathway project proposal earlier this year as envisioned in the Shawnigan Lake Community Parks and Trails Plan. Completion of the additional trail engineering design and environmental impact assessment work will be dependent upon annual funds available through the CVRD’s budget for the Electoral Area B – Shawnigan Lake Community Parks service.

The Shawnigan Village Rail Trail Project is proposed to link Mason’s Beach, Shawnigan Lake Village, Shawnigan Community Centre, Elsie Miles Park, Shawnigan Lake Wharf and Old Mill Park with a multi-use accessible pathway built within the E&N Rail Corridor. The gravel pathway would provide a separated and safe non-motorized (walking and cycling) active transportation route promoting healthy outdoor recreation and community connections for residents and visitors alike.

The Shawnigan Village Rail Trail concept was first identified through community engagement and support in preparing the 2010 Shawnigan Lake Community Parks and Trails Master Plan. The community reaffirmed support for the rail trail idea during preparation of the 2012 South Cowichan Official Community Plan, inclusive of the Shawnigan Village Plan. Funding to proceed with Phase I of the Shawnigan Lake Village Rail Trail Project between Elsie Miles Park and Shawnigan Wharf Park is in place if supported by the community at this time.

Below are five information boards about the Shawnigan Rail Trail Project proposal. 

Timeline: 2010-Present

Rail Trail Plan

Elevation drawings

Trail perspectives

Questions and Answers

Information is also up on PLACESPEAK for more of an interactive discussion.

If you have any comments or questions please contact the Cowichan Valley Regional District Parks & Trails Division at