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Targeted Regional Tourism Development Initiatives

As part of StrongerBC: British Columbia’s Economic Recovery Plan,
the Targeted Regional Tourism Initiative is one of three infrastructure investment programs.
The Kootenay Rockies region received $2.3 million to create
employment opportunities, attract new businesses and increase
economic diversification with communities.


Ten new destination and tourism infrastructure developments are underway in the Kootenay Rockies Tourism region with support from the Province.

“We know recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic for businesses and people in the tourism sector are critically important. This fund creates new tourism infrastructure, which will help the sector recover, create local jobs and spur economic development,” said *Melanie Mark, Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport. “Building on the calls to action from the sector, this fund invests in initiatives that link communities together and encourages visitors to spend time at several destinations within a region.” (*BC Minister from 2020-2022)

The Kootenay Rockies Tourism region, in partnership with community destination management organizations, local and regional governments, First Nations, non-profits and other partners, have worked together to identify initiatives that will enhance the region’s tourism amenities and experiences.

Initiatives underway in the Kootenay Rockies include developing electric vehicle charging infrastructure across the region at key attractions and visitor sites, improving and sustaining access to the Elk River for commercial and recreation users, and developing municipal campgrounds along the scenic Slocan Valley.

Examples in other parts of the province include improvement of trail systems throughout a region for hiking, Nordic skiing or mountain biking, self-guided tour signage to highlight agri-tourism areas and a series of Indigenous landmarks throughout a region. The Province has provided $2.3 million toward these projects.

“The Targeted Regional Tourism Development funding has presented an opportunity to work with the Province and regional partners to strategically position our region for a better future by addressing some important infrastructure gaps. It will also help ensure improved amenities are in place to handle growth and mitigate the impact of increased visitation,” said Kathy Cooper, CEO, Kootenay Rockies Tourism.

The Targeted Regional Tourism Development Initiative (TRTDI) is one of three infrastructure investment programs for tourism as part of StrongerBC, including the Community Economic Recovery Infrastructure program, Destination Development and the Tourism Dependent Communities Initiative.


Brittny Anderson, MLA for Nelson-Creston
“People across the Kootenays are ready to come back stronger than ever before. Tourism is an important part of the Kootenays and by investing in projects and organizations that will attract more visitors to our incredible region, we will recover quickly and build a thriving region for years to come.”

Chad Hughes, Interim Executive Director, Elk River Alliance
“River access improvements will boost the Elk Valley’s tourism and recreation economy by allowing improved safe access to world-class fly-fishing, paddle boating and whitewater rafting. The improved amenities and educational opportunities will assist in the safeguarding of the river and create a culture of stewardship with our river users.”

Completed Projects:

Great Trail Improvements

Castlegar to Nelson – Upgrades to two sections of the Great Trail / TransCanada Trail, Skattebo Reach Trail (widening trail & adding bypasses to lower the trail grade) & Waldie Island Trail (new 85m bypass to make it accessible to cyclists; this section was also capped with crushed gravel).

EV Charging Installations

Destination EV Charging Stations – Through a partnership with Community Energy Association, two level 2 EV charging stations have been installed at key tourism sites:
Cranbrook: St. Eugene Golf Resort Casino KOA Campground, Canadian Rockies International Airport.
Creston: Municipal office.
Golden: Nordic Centre.
Invermere: Downtown.
Kaslo: Vimy Park
Kimberley: Nordic Centre, Marysville Eco Park.
Nakusp: Boat launch.
New Denver: Centennial Park.

CV Greenways Alliance

Radium to Invermere – Visitor amenities along the Old Coach Trail section between Dry Gulch and Radium including: erosion section repair to enable increase in shoulder season usage, repair & upgrade of North section, parking lot & trail entrance improvements for increased capacity, upgraded & new interpretive signage at both trail entrances and two bike fix-it stations.




As part of a multi-phase project, construction of a 5th hut along the Bonnington Range traverse at Lost Lake completes a hut-to-hut experience. This also allows for more capacity along the traverse and attracts visitor in shoulder season as well.

The Elk River Initiative was built off the exiting Fernie boat launch access points improving sustainable & safe access and supporting signage, parking and amenities.
Morrissey: Parking improvements, hazardous tree assessment, mitigation work, signage production, road access enhancements.
Elko: Signage, picnic table, pit toilet, parking lot & road access improvements.
Hosmer: Dangerous tree mitigation, brush clean up, signage production, parking lot & road access improvements.
Olsen Pit: Ground work for sign kiosk, picnic table area, concrete pads.
Dogwood: Old signage removed, new concrete pad poured & new signage.
Coal Creek: Parking lot built, signage structure production.

Funds were applied to the following within the new Visitor Centre building: 3 accessible washrooms, EV charging station, visitor experience hub, digital visitor service tools, brochure racking, sitting area and Indigenous interpretive panels.

The innovative space, distinguished as one of the first Passive House certified, Mass Timber public spaces of its kind in Canada, is poised to become a cornerstone for sustainability and community development in Castlegar.



This collaborative project between the villages of Slocan, New Denver and Silverton seeks to enhance the camping experiences and increase capacity throughout the Slocan Valley.

Centennial Campground in New Denver completed improvements to the septic system, a new sani-station with an automatic pay system, a winterized washroom building and new & improved signage.

The Silverton Municipal Lakeside Campground upgrades included creation and development of camp-host building including office space & washroom.

The Springer Creek RV Park & Campground in the village of Slocan received these upgrades: creation and development of new power building to bring improved services to campsites and electrical upgrading to campsites.

The Cottonwood Lake Regional Park comprises 8.2 hectares (20.3 acres) of land and is located south of the city of Nelson along Highway 6 toward Salmo. This park is now home to two sets of universally designed pit toilets, picnic tables, access route / trail enhancements from parking lot to accessible picnic area, shelter and stunning viewing platforms. Parking lot enhancements also took place to create accessible stalls and wheelchair access to infrastructure within the park.

The Winlaw Regional and Nature Park is located approximately 600 km north of the Winlaw bridge on the west shore of the Slocan River. Comprised of 9.2 hectares (22.7 acres), the park is designated as a waterfront access regional park. Upgrades included accessible washrooms and picnic area, and universally designed wayfinding signage from rail trail to park entrance. Also, accessible trail / route upgrades from parking lot to accessible washrooms and picnic areas.

Kootenay Adaptive Sport Association – Revitalization of key sections of Nakusp Rail Trail and Galena Trail to increase accessibility and visitor amenities.

Visitor Management Amenities

Mountain bike use has significantly grown in the region. Recreation Sites and Trails BC has been working in partnership with local trail groups to improve visitor management amenities at popular destination mountain biking trail networks throughout the region to mitigate negative impacts.
Castlegar: Merry Creek, parking lot improvements and trail enhancements.
Cranbrook: Community Forest, parking lot improvements and connector trail; Southstar parking lot improvements.
Golden: Mount 7 parking lot expansion and infrastructure upgrades (pit toilet).
Invermere: Lillian Lake, parking lot expansion & infrastructure upgrade; Swansea Mountain, parking lot expansion & infrastructure & access upgrades.
Kimberley: Bootleg Mountain, access road, trail and parking improvements (toilet, trail connectors, road widening.)
Nelson: Morning Mountain, trail enhancement and adaptive trail construction.
New Denver: Summit-Rosebery Trail, implementation of motorized bypass trail, safety improvements.
Revelstoke: Keystone Standard Basin, trail improvements; Mt. Cartier / Sunnyside Rec Trail Network, Sunnyside network parking lot expansion.

Craigellachie Last Spike Historic Site

The Last Spike at Craigellachie site is located alongside the Trans-Canada Highway near Revelstoke and managed by the Revelstoke Heritage Railway Society.

The historical site attracts visitors to get a glimpse into Canadian Railway history. Railway track repairs have been completed as well as necessary structural improvements to the site buildings including foundation and roof repairs.

The Revelstoke Railway Museum’s improvements included repairing the structure along Highway 1 east and west bound and replaced skins with new content.