Overview

A resolution is used by municipal districts, counties or specialized municipalities to close roads with the approval of Alberta Transportation.

It can only be used to close unnecessary, undeveloped rural roads registered as road plans at Land Titles, which shows the road plan as ‘excepted from’ the land on the certificate of title(s).

Road plans appropriate for closure by resolution include:

  • road diversions, which are plans that were registered when the road could not be constructed following the surveyed road allowance
  • roads or portions of roads not required after the construction and registration of a new road alignment

Legislation

Municipal Government Act (MGA):

  • Section 24 Road closure (resolution)

Preparing the road closure package

The MGA grants the municipality (or other road authority) the ability to request the closure of a ‘road’ they have determined is no longer needed.

It is recommended before initiating work on the closure package and prior to third party referrals, the municipality contact the Alberta Transportation District Office.

Discussing the closure at this stage gives staff an opportunity to inspect the site to:

  • verify that the road plan is not required as part of the provincial transportation network
  • determine whether there is legal access to the provincial transportation network for potentially affected landowners (current and future)
  • determine whether the road plan closure will be supported by Alberta Transportation

Resolution

The municipality will draft the road closure resolution.

Information that is required in the resolution includes:

  • name of the road authority (municipality/county)
  • purpose of the closure: consolidation into current title, create title or disposal (sale)
  • description of the proposed road closure
    • Before drafting the road closure resolution, the municipality will prepare a description of the closure area that will be acceptable to Alberta Land Titles. While some closure descriptions are clear on the plan or title, an Alberta Land Surveyor may be required to prepare the sketch/plan and the description for the area. A metes and bounds description is required for partial road plan closures
  • lines for signing dates the municipal (council or designate) signature and the Alberta Transportation signature

Third party referrals

It is the responsibility of the municipality to ensure all third party interests are protected by an easement or (utility) right-of-way agreement when the vacant land created by the road closure is disposed of. All easements are signed by Alberta Transportation.

Include all copies of the right-of-way agreement(s) in the package submitted to Alberta Transportation for signature.

Objections

Objections to the proposed closure are not common, but if received, must be reviewed. Council must determine whether the objections are valid and whether they wish to continue with the closure process.

Copies of the objections must be included in the package submitted to Alberta Transportation. It is advisable that objections be addressed before the proposed closure is submitted to Alberta Transportation for consideration.

Cover letter

The rationale for the closure must be included in the cover letter to Alberta Transportation. If objection(s) were received, the cover letter will provide information on how the objection(s) will be addressed.

Submission package

Submit the final package to the Alberta Transportation district office and include following:

  • cover letter requesting the closure and the rationale for closure
  • original copy of the resolution, signed and dated
  • sketch or plan for the closure
  • list of referral letters sent
  • all original copies of each easement or utility right-of-way agreement (if required)
  • copies of objections (written or from the council meeting notes)

Road plan closure registration

Alberta Transportation returns the signed resolution and a signed copy of a “Notification to Registrar” to transfer the land created by the closure.

Consolidation with adjacent land titles may require a new descriptive plan or plan of survey if the land was subdivided after the road plan was registered.

The municipality submits the Notification to Registrar (prepared by Alberta Transportation) to Land Titles to close the road plan and transfer the ownership.