THE PRESS ROOM - for immediate release

27 th Conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers

A bicycle outing from Burlington to Montréal and the City of Québec will precede the Premiers’ and Governors’ discussions this August

>> par Vélo Québec  Montréal, June 26, 2002 – The annual meeting of New England Governors an Eastern Canadian Premiers will be held at the Château Frontenac this year (August 26- 28). This event promotes discussion on various issues, including the economy, energy and the environment.

For the 2002 edition of this conference, which will be held in Québec’s capital city, the Ministère des Relations internationales has asked Vélo Québec to organize a unique introduction. Eleven cyclists will take part in a three-day outing (August 23-26) from Burlington, Vermont, to Montréal and then on to the conference site. The participants will explore various portions of the Route verte, a 4,000-kilometre bikeway that will be inaugurated in 2005. When the group of cyclists arrives at the Château Frontenac on Monday, August 26, each of the Premiers and Governors will be presented with an official plaque.

During the three-day tour, the representatives will have an opportunity to cycle on a portion of Lake Champlain Bikeways in Vermont and, on the Québec side of the border, the following portions of the Route verte in the Montérégie, Eastern Townships, Mauricie and Portneuf regions:
· Between the American border and Saint-Paul de l’Île-aux-Noix;
· From Montréal to Longueuil;
· The Chambly area (the Chambly Canal trail);
· Between Granby and Waterloo (Estriade);
· Between Sainte-Anne-de-la-Pérade and Neuville (Route 138 – Chemin-du-Roy).

The cyclists taking part in this tour are representatives of associations or public bodies involved in the development of bikeways in their province or state.

Since 1997, the Conference of New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers has actively supported the effort to develop the Route verte and similar bikeways in other eastern Canadian provinces and New England. This has led to, among other things, the posting of cross-border signs marking the links between the Route verte in Québec and bikeways in New Brunswick, Vermont and New York State.

This outing represents an opportunity for Québec to strengthen its tourism partnership with its neighbours and to showcase Québec’s leading role in the development of bikeways and greenways in northeastern North America. The Route verte is original idea of Vélo Québec realized in collaboration with the Government of Québec, the Ministère des Transports du Québec and regional partners.

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