Province funds preliminary work on boat launch

The province has come through with a $250,000 grant to help develop a boat launch near Sylvan Lake.

The province has come through with a $250,000 grant to help develop a boat launch near Sylvan Lake.

Alberta Municipal Affairs approved the cash under the Regional Collaboration Program last November and Lacombe County council was given an update at its Thursday meeting.

County commissioner Terry Hager said the money will be used to undertake an environmental study, fisheries review and undertake preliminary design work for a boat launch at Range Road 21, near the Summer Village of Half Moon Bay.

Another part of the project will see a strategy developed to educate the public about good boating practices, addressing issues like loud engines and the importance of protecting the lake from invasive species such as zebra mussels.

The site has been used as an unofficial launching point for years, but was not equipped with proper parking, toilets or garbage cans.

Neighbouring residents, upset by littering and parking issues, had lobbied Red Deer County to close a portion of the range road, but that proposal found little favour with Lacombe and Red Deer Counties and the Town of Sylvan lake.

Alberta Transportation, which has final say, also said it would not support closing the range road.

A request for proposals to hire a consultant to undertake the studies is expected to around mid-February.

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