Identified as part of Council’s top five priorities for 2010, the Tourism Master Plan for the valley is expected to be completed by January 2011, according to a press release.
Malone Given Parsons Ltd (MGP), appointed to work with the tourism industry in Drumheller to develop the plan, will be reviewing the town’s and their partners’ current economic development and tourism strategies with a view to creating a new, single consolidated and revised document that encompasses all tourism components and responds to the shifting economic climate.
In the press release, Mayor Bryce Nimmo stated, “As one of the hubs for the Canadian Badlands we need to ensure that we are leaders in the tourism industry. We have close to a half a million visitors to the valley every year and we have a large role to play in growing this industry.”
Funded through the Rural Alberta Development Fund obtained from the Canadian Badlands Ltd, some of the components in the Tourism Master Plan will include:
Providing recommendations for planning, operational and capital investment requirements to realize tourism goals.
Include recommendations for green space or parks buf fer areas to minimize negative impact on residents as a result of increased tourism visitation.
Include Way Finding Signage.
Identify market opportuni ties (art and culture tourism, shoulder season business)
Review and make recommendations regarding streetscape improvements, parking, traffic flow, pedestrian/cyclist areas, lighting, additional washroom facilities and capacity for motor coach turn arounds.
Recommendations for the feasibility of connecting the commercial district south of the rail lines to the downtown.
Work with a specialized planning consultant to make recommendations for a sustainability component to the Town’s Master Plan. Green planning will include but not be limited to reviews of suitability for a shuttle service, the landscaping and downtown/riparian environment, business and residential density, architectural design and tourism zoning standards for the community and improved trail and pedestrian connectivity across the town and downtown.
The strategy will need to create a realistic implementation plan for both private and public sector to establish goals (both short and long term) identify roles, responsibilities, timing, funding requirements, necessary partnerships and relationships, and linkages to other plans currently underway in the community.