Canada’s national parks belong to all Canadians. They represent the very best that Canada has to offer and tell stories of who we are, including the history, cultures, and contributions of Indigenous peoples.
Following four years of planning, public engagement, engineering and design work, and environmental assessment, Parks Canada is pleased to announce a contract has been awarded for the construction of the Waterton Lakes National Park Visitor Centre. Following a public tendering process by Public Services and Procurement Canada, a $17.3 million construction contract has been awarded to Graham Construction, based in Calgary, Alberta. To maximize the short construction season in Waterton, work is already underway. This project is one of the most significant investments in visitor facilities in Waterton Lakes National Park in the past 50 years.
Once complete, this landmark project will serve as the park’s primary visitor-oriented facility. The visitor centre will offer modern interpretive exhibits and educational programming, as well as a full range of visitor information services. It will welcome Canadians and visitors from around the world, providing them with opportunities to learn about the park’s environmental and cultural significance, including the area’s importance to local Indigenous communities. Interpretive elements will also be incorporated into the visitor centre’s outdoor plaza, which will serve as a meeting place in the community. In addition, a new nature-based playground will provide a place for play and learning for families with children.
Parks Canada values Canada’s relationship with Indigenous peoples, and will continue to work closely with local Indigenous communities to develop interpretive material for the new Visitor Centre that reflects Blackfoot history, traditions, culture, values, and connection to what is now Waterton Lakes National Park.
The visitor centre is an investment in the future of Waterton Lakes National Park and will serve the park and its visitors for decades to come. The visitor centre is scheduled to open to the public in spring 2021.
In 2019, Parks Canada continues to offer a wide range of special events, volunteer activities, and interpretation programs. To help visitors plan their trip, a full list is available, along with information on recreation opportunities, on our website: www.parkscanada.ca/waterton.