Specialized municipality status

Celebrating 20 years as a specialized municipality!

January 1, 2016 marked the 20th anniversary of Strathcona County being granted the specialized municipality status. In recognition of this milestone, Strathcona County celebrated by:

Planting a Legacy Forest

Dedicating an existing tree stand as a Legacy Forest and pollinator garden.  This outdoor space is located in Centennial Park. This area will include the addition of a few newly planted trees, two new benches for guests to enjoy and a native grass pathway leading to a pollinator garden. 

A Pollinator Habitat is grown to help support and encourage pollinators including bees, butterflies and birds. The plantings include perennials that bloom from spring until fall, native plants, trees and shrubs that create a habitat to support these species. This also creates a welcoming area for residents to engage and enjoy nature and observe the pollinators at work.

Bees are the most important pollinator on the planet. 80% of the plants that humans and livestock consume, rely on bees or other pollinators.  A full 75% of all the vegetables, fruit, nuts and herbs that we eat are pollinated by bees. Worldwide, there is an on-going collapse of bee colonies, and a substantial decline in bumblebee populations, due to habitat loss, pesticide use, and other factors. Alberta is fortunate to be home to over 300 different species of bees, including 35 species of native bumblebees.  We can do our part, by providing bees with pollen and nectar, which they need to survive and complete their life cycle.  From the smallest pot of flowers on your doorstep, to building a Pollinator Habitat, we can all help support bees and other amazing pollinators.

Grade 6 Curriculum

An Educational Module is being designed to support the grade six local government curriculum and include information about Strathcona County's specialized municipality status.

Strathcona County - A Specialized Municipality

Effective January 1, 1996, Strathcona County was granted status as a specialized municipality by the Province of Alberta.

What does this mean?
Strathcona County's classification as a specialized municipality provides for the unique needs of a municipality that includes both a large urban centre and a significant rural area and population.

The County includes the urban area of Sherwood Park and a large rural area with eight hamlets. As a result, the needs of residents in various parts of the community are quite different.

Our eight rural hamlets are: Antler Lake, Ardrossan, Collingwood Cove, Half Moon Lake, Hastings Lake, Josephburg, North Cooking Lake, and South Cooking Lake.

Hamlet map (327.9 KB)

Specialized municipality status means that the Province of Alberta recognizes Sherwood Park and the Urban Service Area immediately around as equivalent to a city for purposes of programs and grants. Rural Strathcona County, meanwhile, is recognized as equivalent to a municipal district for programs and grant purposes.

Order in Council 761/95 (280.5 KB)

This Order in Council changed the status of Strathcona County from a municipal district to a specialized municipality.

Services we provide that impact both urban and rural. (590.0 KB)

In Alberta there are three general types of municipalities, urban, rural and specialized. Learn about the types of municipalities in the Government of Alberta website. 

The Alberta Urban Municipalities Association (AUMA) provides an overview of municipal governments, their purpose, organization and structure. 

Related topics

Last updated: Tuesday, February 27, 2018
Page ID: 39063