As part of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program, the Government of Canada, Alberta government, municipalities and community organizations will spend $178.2 million to complete 18 infrastructure projects in northern Alberta.
In Fort McMurray, this includes funding for a new Métis Cultural Centre that will include a multipurpose room, dance studio, theatre, amphitheatre, communal kitchen, office space, exhibition and storage spaces, outdoor workspaces, and gardens. The centre will also feature a garden roof with solar panels and ground source heat pumps to minimize its carbon footprint.
The Municipal District of Lac La Biche County will use its funding to build an Indigenous smudging and cultural awareness venue on the Portage College campus. The community is also receiving funding to build a new aquatics centre with a swimming pool, waterslide, diving boards, kiddie pool, hot tub and steam room. These projects will provide residents with new facilities for sports and recreation, as well as for cultural exchange.
Other projects will help protect residents of northern Alberta from flooding, upgrade wastewater and drinking water infrastructure, improve roads and increase access to arts and outdoor recreation opportunities.
The Government of Canada is investing more than $87.7 million in these projects through the Green Infrastructure Stream (GIS), the Community, Culture and Recreation Infrastructure Stream (CCRIS), and the Rural and Northern Communities Infrastructure Stream (RNIS) of the Investing in Canada plan, while the Government of Alberta is contributing more than $62.4 million.
“I’m pleased that federal funding is helping bring the long-awaited Métis Cultural Centre in Fort McMurray to life. It reflects our government’s commitment to advancing reconciliation and renewing the relationship with Indigenous Peoples based on the recognition of rights, respect, cooperation and partnership. As someone who is passionate about the environment, I’m also excited that the centre will feature energy-saving devices that help promote a green future. This project, along with the 17 others we’re announced today, will help build strong resilient communities, support local economies, and improve people’s lives for years to come. Canada’s Infrastructure plan invests in thousands of projects, creates jobs across Canada, and builds stronger communities.”
“Partnerships are key. No single order of government can resolve the challenges facing rural Canada, especially during COVID. This is why it is important to work together to continue funding infrastructure projects. The $87.7-million federal investment in 18 projects we’re announcing today in northern Alberta is a continuation of our support for rural, northern and First Nations communities in improving wastewater and drinking water systems, reducing flood risks, preserving cultural heritage, and increasing opportunities for people to take part in sports, recreation and cultural activities. Our government will continue to deliver for Alberta communities, building on our investments since 2015 of more than $4.7 billion in nearly 300 infrastructure projects across the province that are helping strengthen local economies and improve quality of life.”
“Northern Alberta is the industrial engine of Alberta and I am thrilled to see these projects announced. Alberta’s Recovery Plan commits to building infrastructure in every region of the province in order to get people back to work and build the infrastructure required to attract private sector investment. Today’s announcement, in conjunction with the federal government, will create good jobs for skilled tradespeople and build vital infrastructure for northern communities.”
“Meaningful reconciliation with our Indigenous Peoples and communities takes all of us working together. Today’s funding announcement from the Government of Canada and the Government of Alberta in support of this new Métis Cultural Centre demonstrates what can happen when we make reconciliation and better partnerships with Indigenous communities a priority. We thank them for this important commitment that will also create local jobs and positive economic growth. I would also like to express my sincere appreciation to the Elders, members and leadership of McMurray Métis for championing this facility and to my council colleagues for unanimously supporting the land transfer for what is a location of historic significance and heritage at MacDonald Island.”
Alberta’s Recovery Plan is a bold, ambitious long-term strategy to build, diversify, and create tens of thousands of jobs now. By building schools, roads and other core infrastructure we are benefiting our communities. By diversifying our economy and attracting investment with Canada’s most competitive tax environment, we are putting Alberta on a path for a generation of growth. Alberta came together to save lives by flattening the curve and now we must do the same to save livelihoods, grow and thrive.
- These northern Alberta infrastructure projects are part of the more than $10-billion infrastructure spending announced as part of Alberta’s Recovery Plan.
- This spending includes:
- $6.9 billion Budget 2020 capital spending
- $980 million accelerated for Capital Maintenance and Renewal
- $200 million for Strategic Transportation Infrastructure Program and water infrastructure projects
- $600 million in strategic infrastructure projects, $500 million in municipal infrastructure
- $1.5 billion for Keystone XL
- Through the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, the Government of Canada is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.
- Since 2015, the Government of Canada has invested more than $4.7 billion in almost 300 infrastructure projects across Alberta.
- To support Canadians and communities during the COVID-19 pandemic, a new stream has been added to the more than $33-billion Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to help fund pandemic-resilient infrastructure. Existing program streams have also been adapted to include more eligible project categories.
- The new Canada Healthy Communities Initiative will provide up to $31 million in existing federal funding to support communities as they deploy innovative ways to adapt spaces and services to respond to immediate and ongoing needs arising from COVID-19 over the next two years.