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The Alberta government introduced the Kananaskis Conservation Pass on June 1. Since then, more than 253,000 passes have been issued, generating more than $10 million in revenue.
Every dollar from the pass is being used to enhance visitor experiences, with revenues going to trail maintenance, visitor services, search and rescue operations, waste management and the upkeep of facilities in Kananaskis Country.
The Kananaskis Conservation Pass is also supporting more boots on the ground for education and enforcement. To date, revenues from the pass have allowed Alberta’s government to hire 20 additional conservation officers to support public safety.
“Investing in our provincial parks and public lands are priorities for Albertans, which is why we introduced the Kananaskis Conservation Pass. We’re already seeing the benefits for the Albertans who enjoy Kananaskis Country and we’ll see many more new projects in the future thanks to the pass.”
Revenue from the Kananaskis Pass builds on the Alberta government’s $70-million capital investment into parks and public lands as part of Budget 2021. About 20 per cent of this capital funding, or about $15 million, is being directed to improvements in Kananaskis Country, including $1 million for planning and design upgrades to the Canmore Nordic Centre and other key initiatives like modernizing William Watson Lodge and improving the popular Yamnuska Trail.
In all, these capital investments will create more than 330 direct jobs and support improvements to trails, facilities, day-use areas, campgrounds and other recreation infrastructure in provincial parks and public lands across Alberta.
“Thanks to the Nordic Centre, Canmore has become an international destination for competitive winter sports and home to more Olympians per capita than anywhere else in the country. This investment will ensure Canmore can once again host world-class events and continue to put our province on the map.”
In addition to investments in parks and public lands, Alberta’s government is introducing a new reporting line, 310-LAND. This line consolidates 15 regional and department lines into one easy-to-remember number that Albertans can call 24-7 to report parks and public land violations and public safety incidents.
Albertans can also use 310-LAND to contact the department during regular business hours for general land and resource-related inquiries and information requests.
These investments are part of the Alberta government’s commitment to the conservation of Alberta’s provincial parks and public lands for Albertans today and future generations.
“As the local government for Kananaskis Country, Kananaskis Improvement District Council operates or funds municipal services such as solid waste, water and sewer, fire and rescue, and the RCMP. We continue to support the Kananaskis Conservation Pass as an important tool for providing critical investment in local services and facilities, which are relied on by millions of visitors to the region annually.”
- Alberta’s government launched the Kananaskis Conservation Pass on June 1, with anticipated annual revenue of $15 million in its first year. The pass is on track to reach that target. Every dollar is being reinvested in Kananaskis Country.
- To date, revenue generated by the Kananaskis Conservation Pass has supported:
- The hiring of 20 additional conservation officers and 32 new seasonal positions, including more recreation officers and visitor services staff to support safe and sustainable outdoor recreation.
- The reopening of two visitor information centres.
- Grooming of cross-country ski trails.
- Increased public safety through incident response services and traffic management.
- Capital investment across the province:
- Parks Central Region: $6,221,700
- Kananaskis Country: $15,759,000
- Calgary Region: $2,011,400
- Parks Northern Region: $11,243,800
- Parks Southern Region: $10,739,400
- Public lands: $7,144,900
- David Thompson Corridor upgrades: $150,000
- Big Island Provincial Park grant: $1,400,000
- Provincial initiatives: $15,329,800
- Highlights of funded capital projects across Alberta:
- Campground improvements, including a multimillion-dollar project to modernize Aspen Beach Provincial Park and electrify campsites at the Brewer’s Campground.
- Improvements to specialized facilities, including the ongoing reconstruction of the William Watson Lodge in Kananaskis.
- Trail improvements, including upgrading Yamnuska Trail in Kananaskis to increase sustainability and Mackenzie Creek trails in Yellowhead County.
- Day-use area upgrades, such as washroom upgrades in Fish Creek Provincial Park and improvements at day-use sites along the Lower Kananaskis River.
- Parking and staging area upgrades, including at Sulphur Gates Provincial Recreation Area and along the David Thompson Corridor.
- Utility upgrades, including water and sewer upgrades in Cypress Hills Provincial Park and Gregoire Lake Provincial Park.
- Buildings and structure upgrades such as shower house replacements in the northwest, including a multimillion-dollar investment at Hilliard’s Bay Provincial Park.