Emerging Stewardship

Our Unique Landscape
The people who live here have great appreciation for our unique landscape and are highly motivated to create a built environment in tune with that natural beauty. To that end, the community has taken important steps toward sustainability.

The municipal and county governments have each demonstrated sustainable building practices. Most notably, both government centres incorporate sustainable design features, including geothermal heating, and use significantly less energy than the norm. The Happy Creek affordable housing project is one of the first such complexes in Alberta to incorporate geothermal heating. Relatively few other structures erected during our recent period of rapid growth take advantage of sustainable technology.
Our eco-industrial park, Innovista, was the first in Canada to deliberately combine green infrastructure, ecological design and the synergy of resource exchange among tenants, helping to signal that our community is serious about being an environmental leader.

Resource exchange is not a foreign concept in this community, given that raw sewage has long been used to help break down byproduct from the local pulp mill. The Town of Hinton is building on that heritage, making greater use of solar heating in recent facility retrofits. All future municipal buildings will meet the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Development silver standard, and new design policies make it easier for private owners to follow suit.
Working Towards
A Trails Master Plan taking effect in 2011 promises to expand the 26-km in-town trail system to more completely connect residents with each other and with community amenities. In future, the trail system will form part of the community’s transportation network. Besides promoting active living and enhancing recreation options, the expanded trail system will reduce our dependence on motorized vehicles.
“Council members hope the 'greening' of the town may convince Hinton‟s shadow population - those people who come to work but not to live - to put down roots. They also hope that businesses will come because their employees (especially the younger ones, those lovers of ATVs, mounting biking, hiking and kayaking) want to recreate in the great outdoors.” - “Greening the Asphalt Acres” Alberta Venture, August 2008