Pathways and Trails Master Plan

The City has conducted a Pathways and Trails study to meet an important strategic priority of the City's Parks, Recreation, Culture and Library Master Plan 2005-2021.

Open Houses have been held across the community giving the public a chance to comment on the draft master plan, including the pathways and trails map. Public feedback was incorporated into the study and presented to Council in April 2008.

Project Status

Public feedback was incorporated into the study and presented to Council in April 2008. The final report of the study can be found in the links below:

City of Markham Pathways and Trails Master Plan Final (2009)

Milne Dam Conservation Area Multi-Use Pathway

The Province of Ontario has provided the City with a $4.5 million grant to help advance the development of the network. One of the first parts of the network plan to move to construction will be a system of multi-use pathways along Major Mackenzie Drive, Donald Cousens Parkway and through the Milne Dam Conservation Area.

The City of Markham held public information meetings to provide residents and stakeholders with an opportunity to review the recommended pathway alignment in the Milne Dam Conservation Area.

Implementation Strategy

The City will undertake the following steps to implement the Pathways and Trails network:

  • Identify high priority projects for implementation in the coming years
  • Identify key partnerships for pathways and trails
  • Commit annual funding for pathway and trail projects
  • Commit operations and maintenance funding to maintain the level of service and quality of existing and proposed facilities
  • Promote pathways and trails through events and marketing
  • Support the Cycling and Pedestrian Advisory Committee of the City
  • Coordinate pathways and trails with on-road cycling facilities


An interconnected system of pathways and trails, which:

  • accommodates a wide variety of user
  • provides a diversity of trail experiences which allow greater appreciation and enjoyment of the natural, cultural, and heritage environment
  • provides improved connections to existing and planned sidewalks
  • is more accessible and connects neighbourhoods with key destinations within the City


  • Develop a long-term pathways and trails plan within the City
  • Provide guidance for the future delivery of pathways and trails
  • Identify pathway and trail users and specific user needs and requirements through public consultation
  • Develop an implementation strategy that describes routes, methods of delivery, construction, costs, and priority connections to link existing systems
  • Create a data management tool that can be updated and adapted as the trail system evolves over time.


  • Pathways generally include major paved surface paths.
  • Trails generally include smaller, soft-surface linkages through more ecologically sensitive areas.

Pathways & Trails As Active Transportation

Pathways and Trails are a vital part of the City of Markham's Active Transportation network.

Why active transportation? For the health of our community. Active transportation reduces road congestion, air pollution, and fuel consumption while promoting good health through exercise.

Active transportation is any form of human-powered transportation to a particular destination - to work, to school, to the store or to visit friends. As long as it is "active," you can choose the mode: walking, cycling, wheeling, in-line skating, skateboarding, etc. Walking and cycling are the most popular forms of active transportation.


In December 2005, the City of Markham retained Marshall Macklin Monaghan Limited to work with staff in the preparation of a Pathways and Trails Master Plan Study.

For More Information

For more information on the City of Markham Pathways and Trails Master Plan Study, please contact the City of Markham Engineering Department at 905-477-7000 extension 2393.

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