During last week’s announcement that Fort Macleod was chosen as the home of the Alberta Police and Peace Officer College it was said time and time again how much of a role the community involvement played in the decision and that support stayed with the project right to the end.
About 100 people crowded into the Fort Ñ Museum of the North West Mounted Police last Wednesday to welcome Solicitor General Harvey Cenaiko, Infrastructure and Transportation Minister Ty Lund and Livingstone-Macleod MLA David Coutts, Minister of Sustainable Resource Development, and the excitement from the community could be felt in the air.
“I think it’s a great deal for Fort Macleod,” Denzil Conner said of the announcement. “I hope it will set Fort Macleod on the map and get the community going, which is something we could use here.”
Deanna Coller was almost at a loss for words.
“It’s wonderful, what else can you say,” she said happily. “It’s like a rebirth. It will do so much for everybody and this little town will come to life again.”
Mayor Shawn Patience said at the end of the day it was the people’s desire to have the facility located here that won the day for Fort Macleod
“The success that we are enjoying to day is due in no small part to the efforts put forward by every single individual in this community.”
Livingstone-Macleod MLA David Coutts took that support to Edmonton.
“One of the things that came up was ‘How much community support is there for this?’” he said. “And I could stand up and I could say the community is solidly behind this.” Solicitor General Harvey Cenaiko agreed.
“There was tremendous support from the community and thank-you for all the cards and letters I’m sure many of you sent me,” he said to a round of applause.
Jan Erb, who moved to town a couple of years ago, was also at the Fort – Museum and said she felt this is what Fort Macleod needs.
“It’s sensational,” she said. “It had absolutely everything we wanted when we came here a couple of years ago and now it’s got a little bit more. I’m just delighted.”
Brendan Grant described the day as “awesome.”
“I think the police college will revive the town and make it grow,” he said.