Significant Tourism + Recreation Areas Model (STReAM)

Client Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation
Location Alberta | Canada

As part of a multi-project effort to develop a provincial Recreation and Tourism Data System that would support multi-scale tourism and recreation planning under the Land Use Framework, Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation tasked O2 to develop a model framework to identify important areas for recreation and tourism systems in a study area. This model, intended to be used as a decision support tool, uses input from the Alberta Recreation and Tourism Features Inventory and other data about recreation and tourism settings to evaluate the significance of recreation and tourism across a study area. The model also delineates distinct areas of high value for recreation and tourism, enabling comprehensive and informed land use planning and policy development. 

As part of this evaluation, the significance of land in the North Saskatchewan Region for recreation and tourism was evaluated. This Region contains a diverse range of recreation and tourism significant areas, from areas in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in the west to lakes and rivers to the east. 

This study not only examined those areas that are of distinct value for drawing tourists to the region, but also those sites that are useful to support local recreation in areas with fewer resources. 

This work was conducted through a modeling package written in Python for ArcGIS 9.3, and was designed to be repeatable at multiple scales and for different study areas. The final report outlined the systematic approach used to evaluate significance, and provided a flexible methodology that can be adapted to include new data inputs and be applied to new contexts into the future.