New communities are being designed to be walkable with the goal of encouraging active lifestyles. Qualico Communities are the same way, but are also designed to improve sustainability. Limestone trails, as opposed to paved trails, provide many benefits to each community, giving back to the natural surroundings, pets and residents alike. Here are a few:
The watersheds in Manitoba are where all our rain and waste-water collect. These retention ponds are fed water both through water absorbed through the ground and by man-made drainage delivery systems. Qualico Communities has made it a goal to try and naturally filter waste water from their communities through elements such as limestone trails, native grasses and constructed wetlands.
The trails in Qualico Communities are constructed with permeable locally-sourced limestone that’s designed to manage water runoff above and below ground, and into the lowlands. This is an improvement from an impervious trail surface such as pavement, which would allow water to run over instead of through the trail. Having water run over the trail speeds the flow and increases the risk of erosion that could damage the native grasses established beside the trail.
Reduced Maintenance Costs
Packed limestone surfaces are much easier to maintain and will last longer than a paved surface with minimal annual upkeep, thus reducing life cycle costs for the community that is responsible for maintenance and renewal. In many developments throughout Winnipeg, it is a common sight to see asphalt or concrete paths that have heaved and cracked over the years. Our cold weather can do terrible things to a paved surface, but crushed limestone moves with the natural surface of the Earth providing the same aesthetic year-after-year with relatively low-maintenance.
Great for Active Lifestyles
Crushed limestone trails are great for families and pets to get out and exercise on. The surface provides improved shock absorption for runners and walkers, and for pets and young kids, the reduced heat retention means less discomfort on paws and any bare feet when out for a walk.
Putting aside all of these utilitarian benefits, these trails are the perfect way to get out and see the neighbourhood, go to the store, or visit a friend. They are designed with YOU in mind. Remember: We encourage you to leave the car in the garage and hit the trails by foot or by bike.
Not only are they useful, but they are beautiful. Throughout the year, as the seasons change, the natural grasses provide colour changes highlighting the natural beauty found in the prairies. They weave through the constructed wetlands, open prairie lands, and back to the homes.
There is nothing quite like the sound of walking on crushed limestone. For many, it takes them out of the city life experience and gives them the feeling of walking amongst nature. Some are reminded of the lake, the park, or any other place far away from the city.