Yellowhead County, a large rural municipality west of Edmonton that stretches between the Pembina River in the east all the way to the Jasper National Park gates in the west, is currently embarking upon a Municipal Heritage Survey.
Over the coming months the County will identify and document a broad range of potential historic places within the County’s boundaries. With Yellowhead County spanning an area of 7,012,000 acres you might be asking, “How is the County going to accomplish this?”
1) Under the Municipal Heritage Partnership Program (MHPP) Yellowhead County has received cost-shared funding. All municipalities in Alberta are eligible to apply for cost-shared funding to assist in the completion of a Municipal Heritage Survey, Municipal Heritage Inventory and/or a Municipal Heritage Management Plan. These projects are designed to assist with the identification, evaluation and management of historic places. Municipalities throughout Alberta have participated in MHPP and learned about the rich historic resources that make their communities unique and livable.
2) Yellowhead County staff, combined with the services of a heritage consultant and the participation of area residents, will complete the Municipal Heritage Survey. The survey will systematically document resources through photographs and record geographical information, design features and construction and historical information.
3) Perhaps most importantly, the County’s Heritage Advisory Board will provide advisory assistance to staff and the consultant throughout the completion of the survey. In September 2010, Yellowhead County Council passed a bylaw establishing a Heritage Advisory Board. This Board, comprised of area residents, has been tasked with the job of advising Council on matters pertaining to the development and maintenance of a heritage program. For instance, the Board will be able to:
- assist in the implementation of heritage initiatives (i.e. the Municipal Heritage Survey);
- facilitate community heritage awareness through partnerships and educational initiatives; and
- advise Council on proposed Municipal Historic Resource designations.
This committed group of volunteers has the important job of providing public input and expertise to Council so that informed decisions about Yellowhead County’s heritage can impact current residents and future generations.
Do you have questions about how your municipality can participate in the Municipal Heritage Partnership Program? Contact program staff to learn more.
Written by: Brenda Manweiler, Municipal Heritage Services Officer