The Town of Drumheller is looking at taking steps to improve Newcastle Beach, in the short term and in the future as part of its flood mitigation plan.
In the short term, the town will be rototilling part of the beach area within the constraints of Alberta Environment to make the beach more suitable for users. In the long term, they are looking at more development in the area.
“In the long term plans as part of our flood mitigation is to actually develop some plazas along the river, where you will have permanent better features,” said CAO Darryl Drohomerski.
This could include a permanent boat launch away from the recreation area of the beach, trails, picnic areas, and fire pits.
“We are in discussion with the Kinsmen because they are interested in making that a project,” he said. “We have talked loosely about what kind of things we could do that would protect the area,” he said.
The town has made improvements to the area this year including extending one of the ball diamonds making it suitable for more levels of teams to use and have also added a new dog park.
“For this summer it is going to be to do the same thing we have the last few years and clean it up, blade it and then wait until we have a good comprehensive plan about what we are doing with the flood mitigation in that part of the community,” said Drohomerski.
“It is part of the overall part of the plan for flood mitigation and adaptation in the valley. It is around trying to not just protect people but also how do we provide more recreational opportunities,” he said.
“Our project was approved in part because it is flood mitigation and adaptation. It is not just simply saying we are going to build a couple of dykes, but we have to understand we are looking at 50 years down the road, and we did that as part of our submission. What is expected to be the weather patterns and build a dyking and protection system that is built for the future. If you are building it based on the flows you are expecting today, you lost.”