Premier Jason Kenney announced on Sept. 15 in Fish Creek Provincial Park, that the government of Alberta is investing $43 million to improve provincial park trails, campgrounds, enhance day-use facilities and other infrastructure.
Roughly $4.5 million will be invested in the Calgary area, with upgrades to trails, parking, washroom facilities, and shelters in Fish Creek Provincial Park.
“Today is a great day. Parks like Fish Creek have drawn people to our province, bringing them in as guests and convincing them to stay as Albertans. Our natural beauty is unmatched, and our provincial parks show off some of the best that we have to offer,” Kenney said.
The parks and public land capital projects include site modernization by refurbishing and replacing infrastructures such as toilets and group-use areas, new landscaping, and improved parking, and maintenance projects such as repairing and maintaining existing infrastructure including campgrounds, facilities, structures, playgrounds, and landscaping.
In collaboration with local partners, motorized and non-motorized recreation activities in parks and public lands will be improved, water supply and wastewater infrastructure in provincial parks will be improved or replaced, and campgrounds will be improved.
“This investment is to keep our provincial parks beautiful for years to come while creating jobs now when they are needed most,” Kenney said.
The projects across the province are expected to get nearly 300 Albertans back to work.
“Alberta’s government is dedicated to protecting parks and the people and businesses that depend on them. They support jobs, growth, and opportunities in industries like tourism, hospitality, and services, meaning they are also a key part of Alberta’s economy,” Kenney said.
“The need to diversify our economy is more important than ever because Alberta has been hit hard by the triple whammy of the largest pandemic in a century, the largest global economic collapse in a century and the largest collapse in energy prices in history.
“Our solution is Alberta’s recovery plan. A bold and ambitious strategy to build, to diversify and to create tens of thousands of jobs now, and we’re moving fast with announcements like this one to put that plan into effect,” he said.
In the short-term, the government of Alberta is investing in projects to get Albertan’s working now, while building infrastructure that will support economic growth and prosperity.
“It’s not just the government that looks after these amazing parks, I’m truly grateful to the volunteer organizations who are out there every day, maintaining and monitoring the landscapes and improving these parks and the visitor experience. They will be essential in helping get the work done,” Kenney said.
Partners such as the Friends of Fish Creek Provincial Park Society, help to identify the needs of the park while educating visitors on responsible recreation and preserving ecosystems.
“We would like to thank Premier Kenney, Minister Nixon, and their team at Alberta Parks for supporting our vision and enabling the next great chapter in the story of Fish Creek Park. Enhancing our partnership will benefit not just the park itself but also the incredible community of volunteers and supporters that make our work possible,” said the Executive Director of the Friends of Fish Creek Provincial Park Society, Nic Blanchet.
“If this tough and different year has taught us anything, it’s how lucky we are to have such a natural and beautiful environment to explore, even when the rest of the world has shut their doors due to the pandemic,” Kenney said.
“In the age of physical distancing, outdoor recreation has quickly become one of the most popular and safest ways to have fun,” he added. “In fact, the use of parks and public lands has surged over this past summer.”