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Federal government delivers funding for Waterton projects

Waterton superintendent

Waterton Lakes National Park superintendent Ifan Thomas and Macleod MP John Barlow.

The federal government last week announced it will invest more than $107-million in Waterton Lakes National Park.
Macleod MP John Barlow announced the investment in Parks Canada projects Friday at Waterton.
“Historic investments like the ones announced today in our national parks and national historic sites simultaneously preserve our natural heritage while also protecting and creating jobs and opportunities,” Barlow said.
The money will fund rehabilitation work along the Akamina Parkway, Red Rock Parkway, Highway 5 and Highway 6, the Chief Mountain Highway, and redevelopment of the Cameron Lake day use area.
The town site’s water and sewer lines, roads and sidewalks will be rehabilitated, and a new visitor reception centre will welcome Waterton’s 400,000 annual visitors.
This investment represents the largest federal infrastructure plan in the 104-year history of Parks Canada.
Established in 1895, Waterton Lakes National Park forms the Canadian part of the Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park, which is identified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Following is a breakdown of the funded projects.
• The $24.3-million Akamina Parkway and Cameron Lake day use area project includes resurfacing the entire length of the parkway, future flood mitigations, reconfiguring its trailheads and replacing the Cameron Lake day use area facilities.
• The $17.5-million Waterton town site infrastructure replacement includes the replacement of subsurface utility systems, surface roads and sidewalks.
• The $10.6-million Highway 5, Highway 6 and Chief Mountain Highway work consists of pavement overlay and guard rail and culvert replacement.
• The $9.1-million compound area development plan replaces aging and inadequate facilities and infrastructure, including the garage and various storage sheds, and the resource conservation building.
• The $7.6-million visitor centre will provide orientation, reception and interpretation in one building, and address access and parking issues.
• The $7.3-million staff housing project will replace the 29-bed bunkhouse units with a series of modern multi-plex units within the community.
• The $5.1-million Red Rock Parkway rehabilitation project includes pavement resurfacing, replacing undersized culverts and reconfiguring the lower parking lot at Red Rock Canyon.
• The $3-million town site campground washroom project will see four new washroom and shower buildings.
• The $2.5-million Waterton town site campground project entails replacement of failing water and sewer infrastructure that dates from the 1960s. Work includes installation of new service lines to individual camp sites along with electrical upgrades to about 50 per cent of the campground.
• The $2-million fence rehabilitation on the east boundary from the 49th Parallel to Yarrow Canyon. This project re-establishes the boundary right-of-way and repairs and replaces the existing fence posts and wire.
• The $1-million town site grounds project includes re-aligning some parking lots, pruning and replacement of trees, and standardization of light fixtures and making street lighting “Dark Skies compliant.”
• The $500,000 Cameron Bay washroom replacement project brings it to a current standard suitable for three-season use by visitors.
• The town site’s 38 garbage bins and 35 concrete pads will be replaced at a cost of $375,000.
• The Peace Park Pavilion interpretative signs will be replaced at a cost of $340,000.
• The Belly River Group Camp crossing will be rehabilitated at a cost of $250,000.
• The deteriorating bison handling facility originally built in 1952 will be rebuilt at a cost of $175,000.
• Facilities in Waterton Lakes National Park and Bar U Ranch that were damaged in 2013 flooding have been, or are being, repaired.
In Waterton Lakes National Park, this $9.7-million project includes repairing sections of the Akamina Parkway and the sewage lagoons, stream bank protection at Crandell Campground bridge and replacing the Canyon Camp bridge.
• Restoring the ecological function of grassland ecosystems will cost $6.3-million.

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