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Last updateThu, 13 Aug 2020 12pm

Drumheller Public Library offering curbside pickup

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While the Drumheller Public Library remains closed to the public, avid readers are able to utilize the library’s curbside pickup to check out material.
Drumheller Public Library closed its doors to the public on Monday March 16 to protect staff and patrons amid COVID-19 concerns. The closure meant the community lost more than the opportunity to find a good book; families lost out on play and educational groups for children, DVD and instrument rentals, or even a quiet place to read, play with LEGO, or build a puzzle.
“People have been really pleased to be able to borrow physical books and movies again--ebooks just don’t meet the same need,” Emily Hollingshead, director of library services for the Drumheller Public Library, told the Mail.
The curbside pickup program started in mid-July and Hollingshead says it has already grown “from just a handful the first day to an average of about 20 pickups per three-hour window, now.”
Public libraries were included in Phase Two of reopening by the Government of Alberta, though the decision on how to reopen was left up to individual library boards.
One of the considerations to reopening the Drumheller Public Library was its accessibility--as it can only be accessed through the Badlands Community Facility, the library will not be allowed to physically reopen until the shared facility can as well.
“Until a couple of weeks ago, even library staff had very limited access to the library--maybe an hour per week,” Hollingshead said.
Understanding how valuable a library and its contents can be to the community, Hollingshead said the team realized they could utilize their limited time to collect requested items to bring to a pop-up library.
“The Drumheller Farmers Market Association has been very generous in making room for us, and we’ve loved connecting with the community again,” Hollingshead told the Mail.
With books being checked out once more, the library is now also receiving deliveries from others in the Marigold Library System, including both books and movies.
Other libraries within the Marigold Library System are also beginning to offer curbside pickup for their respective communities, though availability and pickup dates may differ.
Drumheller Public Library has curbside pickup available at the library on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and at the Drumheller Farmers Market on Saturdays at their pop-up library. Patrons are encouraged to place hold requests using the TRAC website, or by calling the library for more information.

Town revamping development guiding documents

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Part of the efforts to make Drumheller a more resilient community is to revamp the overarching frameworks that guide the community.
On Tuesday, August 4, Darwin Durnie, the Chief Resiliency, and Flood Mitigation Officer and Matt Knapik of O2 Planning and Design were a delegation at the Drumheller Town Council meeting. They discussed making major changes to the Municipal Development Plan (MDP) and Drumheller’s Land Use Bylaw,(LUB) and also develop the Downtown Area Revitalization Plan (DARP). These documents set the groundwork for the future of the community.
Durnie explains one of the most important changes in the MDP is to put the Red Deer River in the centre of its planning. After all, the Red Deer River connects neighborhoods and can act as a destination. It can also be destructive if mitigation efforts aren’t taken.
“The most important statement this group has made recently is … ‘Drumheller is a flood community,’” said Knapik. “This fundamentally changes the way you have to approach planning and the discussion of the river, not just technically, but conceptually. What is at the heart of the valley.”
“These three documents (MDP, LUB, and DARP) are really key and this is a really amazing opportunity. To reconfigure them all at once to understand this new reality that the valley sits in with this statement ‘we are a flood community.’”
The MDP is the guiding document however a review of the existing plans noted it fell short in some areas, including a vision for legacy, unclear guidelines about the river, it does not adequately leverage investment and does not celebrate the unique character of the valley and its neighbourhoods, nor does it integrate amenities.
Durnie explains there is a need to modernize the Land Use Bylaw this means a shift from land use-based designation to more on the form. This takes simplifying the bylaw by reducing the number of districts from over 20 to about 8. This would make it easier on the applicant and administration, This adds flexibility, discretion, and recognizes the unique neighbourhoods in Drumheller.
“To use the opportunity of changing the LUB, the MDP, and downtown revitalization all at the same time. It really gives us an opportunity to inspire and try to attract development and doing it through enabling things rather than trying to control,” said Durnie.
“While we know the river can be a threat to our community, for the majority of time it’s an amenity and an economic driver to inspire investment. Our hope is these revised documents will enable development and not control or restrict development.”
They are hoping to present the first reading of the Bylaw this coming fall, and are working to engage the community to learn more about the changes and how it will impact Drumheller. On Thursday, August 13, the Drumheller Mail is hosting a Facebook Live event at 2 p.m. This is an opportunity to learn about the redraft of these documents and provide feedback.

Missing Hussar area woman found safe

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An elderly woman who was last seen in the Wintering Hills Saturday, August 8 afternoon has been found safe.
The Bassano RCMP sought support from the community Sunday afternoon in locating 74-year-old Donna Sevcik. She was last seen at her residence near Range Road 194 and Township Road 255 outside Hussar at approximately 4 p.m. Saturday.
There were concerns for her safety as she has medical issues and also suffers from Dementia.
Badlands Search and Rescue, Calgary Search and Rescue were actively patrolling the area searching on Sunday, and the search continued Monday morning.
Bassano RCMP reported on Monday that Mrs. Sevcik had been discovered approximately 3 kilometres from her residence. She was transported via STARS to a Calgary hospital with minor injuries.


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