Alaska Highway Corridor nominated as National Historic Site of Canada

By on October 29, 2015
The Historic Kiskatinaw curved bridge. Photo: Simon Ratcliffe

The Historic Kiskatinaw curved bridge. Photo: Simon Ratcliffe

DAWSON CREEK – The Alaska Highway Corridor, from Dawson Creek to the Alaska Border, has been officially nominated for National Historic Site of Canada status, the Alaska Highway Heritage Project (AHHP) announced Tuesday.

The nomination was submitted under the “place” category to the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada on Oct. 15, 2015 by the Alaska Highway Community Society (AHCS) in B.C. and the Alaska Highway Heritage Society (AHHS) in the Yukon.

Twelve individual sites along the 1,900 kilometre stretch of highway have been included in the nomination, including the Historic Kiskatinaw curved bridge just north of Dawson Creek, the Charlie Lake Cave (Tse’K’wa), and the Old Fort Nelson (Tthek’eneh Kúe) Warden’s Cabin.

“The Alaska Highway cut through our landscape and irreversibly altered this corridor. Our nomination recognizes the deep history of connection, loss and change and it celebrates the shared cultural heritage which continues to develop along this ‘Main Street’ of the North,” said Janna Powell, AHHS president.

“We are excited for the next stage, the decision of the Historic Sites and Monuments Board to accept our cultural highway corridor as a National Historic Site of Canada.”

According to the AHHP announcement, a National Historic Site of Canada commemoration is honorific only; there are no legal obligations on the part of the federal government to protect sites or resources or fund interpretive programs. Ownership after commemoration does not change, and maintenance and development of National Historic sites stays the same as they are at the time of nomination.

A decision will be made by the Government of Canada through the Minister of Environment, after an evaluation process and recommendations from the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada.

In addition to the nomination, the AHCS and AHHS are working to increase promotion of the Alaska Highway Corridor, by inviting and supporting ideas and projects to interpret the history of the highway and encourage tourism to the area.

The AHCS is formed of local government representatives along the corridor, and was started over 30 years ago. It has been funded by the Peace River Regional District (PRRD) since 2011.

AHHS was started in 2013 by interested individuals in the Yukon, with the main purpose of establishing the Corridor as a National Historic Site by the 150th anniversary of Canada in 2017.

“We are extremely grateful to the Peace River Regional District for having the foresight to fund this initiative since September 2011, and we are proud of the fact that this project has been driven by the people and communities of northeastern BC and Yukon. Their hard work has helped us get to this point – the submission of the nomination of the Alaska Highway Corridor,” said Bud Powell, chair of the AHCS.

Stacy Thomas

news@northeastnews.ca

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *