The town of Sylvan Lake has requested to take control of Sylvan Lake Provincial Park from the province as a way for the town to better promote the area as well as to license and manage waterfront business activity.
The town is looking to implement its Waterfront Area Redevelopment plan on the south edge of Sylvan Lake but in the past, the Provincial Parks Act limited the town’s ability to carry it out. Talks have been held between the two parties in the past.
Under the plan, the park would remain open for public recreation purposes only, and no commercial or residential development would be allowed.
According to an economic impact assessment of tourism in the area completed in 2014, tourism provided about $75 million to the local economy directly and indirectly, and provided the community with 600 jobs.
“Sylvan Lake Provincial Park is already a destination for Albertan families, creating huge economic benefits for the region,” Environment and Parks Minister Shannon Phillips said. “We have the potential to further support job creation, tourism and the local economy.”
In a news release, the province says it does not receive any revenue from the park because it is a day use-only area, and if the transfer goes ahead, maintenance funding would be redistributed to other provincial parks.
A 60-day public feedback period will take place before a final decision is made. The province is asking for feedback online.
© 2017 a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.