Land Development: Land Planning & Regulatory Approvals

Part of the process in developing a tourism project may involve dealing with land and regulatory issues. The following resources are intended to provide guidance in this regard. You are encouraged to consult with regulatory officials as you move through the development process.

Tourism Development Guide

Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation's Tourism Development Guide provides guidance for those undertaking land based tourism development projects in Alberta. It provides information regarding federal, provincial and municipal regulatory and permitting processes.

Government of Alberta - Alberta Tourism Recreational Leasing Process (ATRL)

The ATRL process is designed to handle unsolicited tourism and commercial recreation development proposals on public land on a "first come - first served" basis. Generally, these are private sector developments that offer tourism and commercial recreation opportunities to the public and may involve any one or all of the following:

  • requirement for long-term tenure;
  • placement of permanent structures;
  • need for public review (in the opinion of Alberta Sustainable Resource Development); and
  • integration with existing land uses.

Two Alberta Government departments are involved in the ATRL process:

  1. Alberta Tourism, Parks & Recreation
    ATRL process consultation and information services.
  2. Alberta Sustainable Resource Development
    Tourism & Recreational use of Public Lands

For additional information on the ATRL process, please feel free to contact:

Paul Radchenko, Tourism Product Development Planner

Government of Alberta - Land Use Framework (LUF)

In 2008, the Government of Alberta announced a new framework for the management of land in Alberta. The Land-use Framework is a comprehensive approach to planning to better manage public and private lands and natural resources to achieve Alberta's long-term economic, environmental and social goals. The framework provides a blueprint for land-use management and decision-making that addresses the growth that has occurred in Alberta over the past several years. The implementation of the provincial LUF is underway including the development of regional plans and a number of strategic initiatives that relate to tourism and recreation.

Land-Use Framework

Alberta Land Stewardship Act (ALSA)

Other Provincial Government Land Development Information Sources:

Alberta Municipal Affairs

The Municipal Government Act is the provincial legislation that governs and directs the way municipalities deal with land base planning and development in Alberta. It is administered by Alberta Municipal Affairs. Municipalities are ultimately responsible for issuing permits for land based tourism development in their respective jurisdictions.

Municipalities in Alberta

Service Alberta

Service Alberta is the provincial ministry responsible for registering land ownership rights in Alberta. The Land Titles Act provides the legislative framework for the department to register land related documents that both create and terminate legal rights in property.

Land Registration & Services

Alberta Environment and Water

The Ministry of Environment and Water oversees a variety of legislation and strategies that have relevance for tourism development in Alberta.

Electronic Disposition System
Environmental legislation, regulations and policy

Alberta Sustainable Resource Development

The Ministry of Sustainable Resource Development is responsible for the management of Alberta's public lands.

Recreational Access to Agricultural Public Land

Electronic Disposition System

These systems provide access to information relating to public land and surface/mineral interests on crown land (i.e.) details on activities that are occurring on public land and existing land dispositions.

Contact Information for Municipalities in Alberta:

Alberta Association, Canadian Institute of Planners

Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties

The Alberta Association of Municipal Districts and Counties provide information concerning Municipal Districts [M.D.] and Counties in Alberta.

Alberta Urban Municipalities Association

The Alberta Urban Municipalities Association provides information concerning all other communities in Alberta, including cities, towns, villages and summer villages.

Last reviewed/revised: December 9, 2013