The purpose of the intermunicipal Development Plan (IDP) is to facilitate and sustain long term strategic growth and to identify joint development opportunities in the Rural-Urban Fringe (RUF) between Hinton and Yellowhead County (the Municipalities). The Municipalities agree that mutually beneficial policies and procedures are the preferred means of addressing intermunicipal growth opportunities within the agreed upon plan area (see Figure 1-Plan Area). The IDP has been developed in alignment with the requirements of the Municipal Government Act (MGA) and represents the best opportunity for a continuous cooperative working relationship between the Municipalities.
Meadow Drive is a residential development in the early years of Hinton. There has been a number of water breaks in the original water line installed in the 1950s. The road and sidewalk were in need of replacement recognizing a number of sidewalk trip hazards. With this rehabilitation the sanitary line is being replaced and storm management is being constructed. One of the key challenges in replacing the infrastructures services is being able to maintain traffic flow for residents, visitors and service delivery agencies on Meadow Drive. The storm water is new infrastructure and the water and sanitary tie into a collector road, (Macleod Avenue and Mountain Street) and will impact the community-at-large.
Bylaw Services moved from operating out of the RCMP Services Building into the Fire Hall in 2014. The Firehall was not originally designed to support providing services and accessibility to the public at large and as such has seen interior renovations over the past couple of years and the outside rehabilitation of a sidewalk provide direction to the public and keep them away from the emergency exists for firehall service vehicles. The rear rehabilitation work supports constructing positive storm water management from the site. The training facility uses significant volumes of water and the site was becoming saturated with signs of established trees falling over and the generator pad heaving. The construction will support positive drainage away from the site and ensure the building is not impacted.
Athabasca Avenue is a commercial development in the early years of Hinton. The original sanitary and water lines were constructed in 1956 and are undersized for existing conditions and future growth and development for the east side of Town. One of the key challenges in replacing the infrastructures services is being able to maintain traffic flow for business owners, customers and service delivery agencies on Athabasca Avenue.
The Dr. Duncan Murray Recreation Centre 10 Year Strategy was presented to Council on November 22. The report shared the public and stakeholder feedback that was received this fall and outlined high level cost estimates on the components of Concept 1. After reviewing the report in detail with David Edmonds, architect with GEC Architecture, and key members of administration, Council’s next step is to obtain a detailed design to determine variables such as size and quality of additions and renovations, and how they affect the costs of Concept 1, which includes a new aquatic centre and fieldhouse.
The Town of Hinton along with ISL Engineering and Land Services, is developing a Parks, Open Space and Trails Master Plan. The purpose of the Master Plan is to identify gaps, needs and priorities for the Town. As part of the development of the Master Plan, we are undertaking a review of the Town’s existing parks, open spaces and trail networks, including best practices from similar municipalities, and implementing a comprehensive engagement process to gather feedback from Town residents and stakeholders.
Economically, Hinton has major natural resource extraction and processing firms located in and around the community. These have proved to be excellent co-operate citizens beyond providing stable and well-paying employment to residents. Its economy is robust and diversified, which helped it weather the recent economic recession that gripped the province and country.
Despite these advantages, Hinton’s population has stagnated for nearly two decades at under 10,000 residents and the town has not been able to leverage its considerable resources into sustained growth. Adding to these pressures, nearby growth threatens Hinton’s economy as communities like Edson expand, partly due to lower cost housing and the securement of major investments, including a $300 million healthcare centre.
The Town of Hinton has announced a partnership with Epoch Energy to advance Hinton Geothermal; an innovative district energy heating system leveraging heat energy from deep, hot reservoirs in the Hinton area as well as a future goal of geothermal power generation. Hinton’s location is central to oil and gas exploration, well bore infrastructure, and the requisite geology to be repurposed for geothermal energy—an approach that is creative and novel in its vision.
During the Regular Council Meeting on December 1, 2015 Hinton Town Council decided stating: “That the Arts Venue project be advanced as a full build-out costing up to $6 million, with any shortfall in funding (once grants, sponsorships, community fundraising etc. are maximized) be covered by a 4.5 million debenture”. The full scope of the project will be completed by two different General Contractors. The first phase is for the full renovation and buildout of the facility, awarded to Jen-Col Construction Ltd. The 2nd Phase will be for the fit out of furnishing, fixtures, and equipment specific to operating the facility as a performing arts venue and theatre. The scope of work for the second phase will be tendered December 2016.
At the September 6, 2016, Regular Council Meeting, Council voted to adopt the draft Land Use Bylaw (LUB). Town of Hinton administration and engineering firm ISL, with direction and support from Council, reviewed and revised the Land Use Bylaw (LUB) creating a document that promotes growth and supports development initiatives through positive user-friendly development regulations.
West and East Areas Structure Plans
An ASP is a statutory document that must be passed by Town Bylaw. The Area Structure Plan (ASP) proposes a sequence of development for an area, the future land uses, the density of population, and the general location of transportation and public utilities.
In 2017, Council adopted Area Structure plans for the East and West portions of Hinton.
This project sees the construction of a waterline from the Thompson Reservoir, across Highway 16, and east along Phases II and III of Innovista Eco-Industrial Park. This allows for the Town to be growth ready to supply water services with fire flow for not only Phases ll and lll, but also the future Highway Commercial Corridor on the Northeast side of Highway 16 and the Southside of Highway 16.
The Switzer Drive construction is twofold, sanitary upgrade and road infrastructure. Upgrading the main sanitary trunk that serves the eastern area of Hinton and ties into new Hardisty Lift Station project. Constructs a new west bound and east bound traffic lane between the intersections of Joblin Street and Drinnan Way. These intersections identify the transition points of existing road to new road infrastructure. Once the new single west and east bound traffic lanes are opened, the Town will be decommissioning and removing the existing west and east road surface between these intersections. The new road construction remains as one single lane of traffic for east bound traffic and one lane west for west bound traffic. The new road infrastructure design (two lanes only) introduces stormwater management, a designated cross walk, improved street lighting and a pedestrian trail, which not only creates connectivity but promotes safer pedestrian movement in this area of our community.