Parks, trails and urban forestry

Suburbs

There's no better way to live a healthier, more active lifestyle than by visiting one of our parks and trails. In Kitchener, we boast more than 1,600 hectares of parkland, which includes more than 75 natural areas, 220 parks, more than 125 kilometres of community trails and 45,000 street trees.

Use our Parks story map to find a local park or trail. Our Pingstreet mobile app also provides access to local trail maps - right from your smartphone or tablet.

Or, you can purchase a Grand River Transit (GRT) map; copies are available for $2 at the Welcome Centre, located on the ground floor of Kitchener City Hall, the GRT transit terminal on Charles Street, and the information kiosks at Fairview Park and Conestoga malls.

Be prepared outdoors

  • While spending time outdoors is always good for the soul, you should take certain precautions to protect yourself from the critters and crawlers who make our parks, trails and natural areas home.
    • Ticks - With more tick encounters locally the past few years, awareness is key when it comes to protecting yourself and your pets. Review our tick information for more details.
    • Sand bees - There are more than 400 species of wild bees in Ontario. Some - called social bees - nest in colonies, while others - called solitary bees -- nest alone.
    • Solitary bees often nest together in good habitat, especially in soil or sand. Solitary bees are more docile and less concerned with human activity. However, please respect and give them space, as you do with other bees and wasps. We are currently seeing this activity in three of our playgrounds:
    • Wheatfield playground
    • Settlers Grove playground
    • Tecumseh Park playground

Ground-nesting bees act as important pollinators. While these bees are capable of stinging, they are less likely to do so. They are most active from late summer to early fall.

Social bees are more likely to protect their home or hive by using aggressive tactics like stinging. Please give them space.

News and events

Sandrock Green pedestrian bridge closure

Please note: Following a routine inspection, the Sandrock Green pedestrian bridge, located behind 246 Westhights Dr., has been closed, effective immediately. The inspection found the bridge has reached the end of its lifespan and continues to deteriorate beyond the point of repair. Closing it is the only option until the bridge can be removed this spring.

We recognize the inconvenience the removal of this pedestrian bridge causes but the safety of our residents is our primary concern. Information about alternate routes will be posted at the site of the bridge to help users reach their destination.

We are committed to building and maintaining safe, sustainable infrastructure that supports walkable neighbourhoods and the long-term needs of the community. We appreciate your patience during this transition.

Trails along Strasburg and Schneider creeks in Doon

The trail leading from Doon Village Road to Old Carriage Drive over the pedestrian bridge is closed. Signs have been posted. The trails were inspected on March 27, and as a result, this trail is closed until repairs are carried out.

Remedial work begins on April 3, and should be complete by April 6 (weather permitting). 

We know residents love their trails and we are doing our best to return trails to a better condition after the winter damage.

KNAP -- Learn more about Kitchener's Natural Areas Program (KNAP) and find out about upcoming events and activities taking place in our natural areas.

Upper Canada Park -- Park upgrades, including the Southwest Optimist sportsfields, Doon Pioneer Community Centre, the neighbourhood park and natural area, are now in progress. Learn more about the project.

Natural area management plans -- Working with area residents; we've developed comprehensive management plans for our natural areas, including Monarch Woods and the Laurentian Wetlands.

Parks

Like other great combinations in life - such as peanut butter and jam or cookies and milk, parks and neighbourhoods are a natural pairing. One isn't nearly as appealing without the other.

In Kitchener, we're fortunate to have 220 parks across our community - giving almost every neighbourhood a place of their own to enjoy fun-filled activities, such as soccer games, picnics and children's play dates.

Use our OnPoint mapping program to find a park near you.

Featured parks

While most cities may only have one crown jewel in their park systems - we have three gems, with each offering a unique features and something for everyone.

  • Victoria Park - Located downtown Kitchener, Victoria Park offers families a large playground, splash pad, picnic tables, beautiful gardens and the celebrated clock tower bell from our old City Hall.
  • McLennan Park - Built on 96 acres, McLennan Park boasts a BMX bike park, beach volleyball and basketball courts, a leash-free dog park, skatepark, splash pad, toboggan hill and our city's largest accessible playground.
  • Kiwanis Park - At more than 119 acres in size, Kiwanis Park offers year-round fun with trails, a leash-free dog park, lake-like swimming pool, snack bar, picnic shelters, beach volleyball courts and athletic fields.

For the latest news on our future park plans, check out our current developments. More information on our parks can also be found in our parks strategic plan.

New parks

Kitchener has two new parks: Hewitt Park at 269 Seabrook Dr., and Ferguson Heritage Green, which opens in 2018, is located on Huron Road near Ludolph Street. 

  • Hewitt Park is named for William Hewitt (1847-1898), who created Victoria Park's landscape in 1895. His son, Austin, purchased a farm in Williamsburg in 1917. Williamsburg Cemetery has several vintage farm implements donated by Austin's son, Arthur Hewitt. Hewitt Park amenities include a children's playground, trails, open space for active play, and ready to use facilities and services to support a volunteer operated outdoor skating rink.
  • Ferguson Heritage Green is under construction and is expected to open in 2018. The green will have a trail connecting the community to Huron Road, and open space for play as well as plantings and interpretive signage. Ferguson Heritage Green was originally part of the farm lands purchased by Archibald Ferguson in 1848. The farm lane and vista of the original farmhouse as seen from Huron Road are protected under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act. Its historic value relates to the early settlement of the German Company Tract in the 1800s and the property's continuous agricultural use into the 21st century.

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