ʔapsčiik t̓ašii (Ups-Cheek Ta-Shee Trail) – British Columbia, Canada

  • Parks Canada
Project Value

$51 million




Design And Urban Planning, Engineering, Program/Construction Management (PM/CM), Sustainability

The ʔapsčiik t̓ašii (pronounced ups-cheek ta-shee trail) is a transformative active transportation project that provides a 25-kilometre, hard surfaced multi-use pathway through the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. The project is located on the west coast of Vancouver Island in British Columbia in the traditional territories and lands of the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation and Yuułuʔiłʔatḥ. The trail provides comfortable active transportation access to several attractions within the National Park Reserve, First Nations communities, and the municipalities of Tofino and Ucluelet. With us as the lead designer and overall engineer of record, the carefully crafted pathway alignment mitigates impacts to environmentally, archeologically, and culturally sensitive areas.

Forging A Path Through A National Park Reserve

The path alignment underwent numerous revisions in response to environmental, archeological, and geotechnical conditions.

We designed a “wandering” path and helped to develop innovative solutions such as boardwalks, culvert extensions, slope stabilization techniques, and wildlife habitat enhancements to mitigate impacts to sensitive areas.

Alignment adjustments persisted through to construction, when highly variable field and weather conditions required prompt field decisions. This efficient decision-making process was supported by environmental, archeological, and cultural assessments.

The success of the ʔapsčiik t̓ašii project is a testament to meaningful collaboration with affected communities, including First Nations. The result is a safe, reliable, sustainable facility which has encouraged additional active transportation within the communities and for visitors. The project was recognized for these efforts in being named a Finalist for the Transportation Association of Canada (TAC) 2023 Active Transportation Achievement Award. The project was nominated for the 2023 ACEC-BC Awards for Municipal & Civil Infrastructure.

Our Approach

The ʔapsčiik t̓ašii was constructed with the future in mind, using innovation and a quality-based approach to inform decision making. Sustainability was at the forefront of design and construction, with the pathway alignment constantly evolving to mitigate impacts to sensitive areas. The design process benefitted from close consultation with the local First Nations representatives and other stakeholders. Since its official opening in June 2022, commuter and recreational use has flourished, indicating that it encourages sustainable transportation modes.

Despite multiple iterations of the pathway alignment and dynamic conditions during construction, we helped to manage a constrained schedule and the construction was completed on time. A quality product was delivered with meaningful engagement of the community and stakeholders.

Our Leadership Role

We exhibited our broad active transportation design expertise through involvement in all stages of planning, design, and construction. We provided the following services towards the completion of this project.

  • Project Management
  • Conceptual Design
  • Functional Design, including Class C Cost Estimates
  • Public and stakeholder engagement
  • Preliminary and Detailed Design
  • Tender package preparation
  • Contract administration, inspection, and engineering services during construction
  • Trail Design Wayfinding Design
  • Highway Design
  • Parking Lot Design / Upgrades
  • Culvert Design
  • Structural Design of Elevated Trails and Bridges

For more information about the ʔapsčiik t̓ašii, see the Transportation Association of Canada Active Transportation Achievement Award page.

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