2011-2012 Parks Canada Agency Corporate Plan

Section IV - Other Items of Interest

Update to Parks Canada Long-Term Capital Plan

Strategies and Priorities

During the planning period, the Agency will complete the development and implementation of information management systems and tools for asset management and realty holdings. The Agency will also review its asset holdings to ensure a sustainable portfolio that is relevant to the achievement of its mandate.

During 2010-11, the Agency began transitioning to the Government of Canada'sPolicy on Investment Planning - Assets and Acquired Services (2007). This will effectively replace the Parks Canada Agency (PCA) Long Term Capital Plan / Process with a new 5 year Investment Plan / Process during the period covered by this plan.

The new five year Investment Plan, when approved by Treasury Board, will include significant investments in Capital Assets, and will be guided by thePolicy on the Management of Projects,theStandard for Organizational Project Management Capacity,and theStandard for Project Complexity and Risk.

The management of assets, both contemporary and cultural, is central to the delivery of three of the five program activities in the Agency as well as for internal services delivery. The protection of cultural assets is often an end in itself, while contemporary assets are primarily a means to achieve the Agency's mandate and program objectives. Aging infrastructure and inadequate level of recapitalization and maintenance could result in failure of assets and/or significant impairment of built cultural resources, which could compromise public safety, hinder Parks Canada's ability to deliver on its mandate and damage the Agency's reputation. In the future, the Agency may be forced to close facilities for safety reasons. Parks Canada has therefore recognized Asset Management as a key corporate risk. To mitigate this risk, the Agency will review its real property holdings to ensure that the portfolio can be sustainably managed with an emphasis on high risk assets such as canals, dams, bridges and highways.


Parks Canada's holdings in real property fixed assets are diverse and extensive (numbering approximately 18,000) with a replacement value of $11.6 billion, making the Agency a major custodian in the Canadian government.

The variety of fixed assets included in the Agency's inventory range from modern digitally controlled buildings to fortifications, to dams and weirs constructed in the 19th century, to highways and bridges cut through the Rockies. The Agency also manages assets such as wildlife overpasses, underpasses, fencing and jumpouts designed specifically to support ecological integrity and ecosystem protection objectives. Parks Canada's assets are found, literally, from sea to sea to sea. The diverse range of skills and resources required to manage such a varied inventory go beyond those required by other custodians.

Parks Canada also welcomes more than 20 million visitors each year, which poses the unusual challenge of managing this real property in ways that facilitate visitor experience while ensuring the protection and presentation of the heritage places it administers.

Parks Canada's assets are divided into four groups that present unique management challenges. Cultural or historic assets are core to Parks Canada's mandate; visitor assets are required to enable the visitor experience; assets administered on behalf of the Federal Government by virtue of their location within national parks or national historic sites; and, supporting assets support service delivery of Parks Canada's programs and services.

Cultural Resources (23% of total asset portfolio)

Cultural or historic assets are core to Parks Canada's mandate, primarily for Heritage Resources Conservation (Program Activity 2), Public Appreciation and Understanding (Program Activity 3), and Visitor Experience (Program Activity 4).

Cultural resources, found in 167 Parks Canada administered national historic sites and 42 national parks, include historic and archaeological resources that are nationally significant and have historic value. Cultural resources are irreplaceable and require a close level of management expertise distinct from that required for contemporary assets. The consequence of not making timely capital interventions is the permanent loss of Canada's heritage fabric since the average year of construction of these assets is: 1902 for buildings; 1879 for marine works; and 1844 for fortifications.

Visitor Facilities (44% of total asset portfolio)

Visitor facilities provide opportunities for Canadians to access, learn about and experience their natural and historical heritage and are the mainstay of Parks Canada's Visitor Experience Program (Program Activity 4). Visitor facilities include reception and interpretive centres, trails, campgrounds and day-use areas, as well as related assets such as access roads, parking lots and water and wastewater systems.

Generating more than $100 million in revenue, these assets rank among the principal assets of Canada's tourism industry, contributing $1.3 billion to Canada's Gross Domestic Product and the equivalent of 31,000 full-time jobs.

Assets administered on behalf of the Government of Canada (26% of total asset portfolio)

Assets administered on behalf of the Government of Canada include highways, contemporary bridges and dams on historic canals and municipal structures in national park townsites. Parks Canada is responsible for approximately 1000 kilometres of highways and 97 bridges, which form part of the Trans-Canada Highway and sections of various provincial highways. Parks Canada is also responsible for: waterway management infrastructure, including over 230 dams controlling water levels and 116 bridges; municipal infrastructure including roads and bridges, and; water and wastewater treatment systems within national park townsites. This group of assets is associated with Townsite and Throughway Infrastructure (Program Activity 5).

Supporting assets (7% of total asset portfolio)

Supporting assets include assets such as maintenance compounds, administration centres and fleet which are associated with a wide variety of Internal Services and support the delivery of Parks Canada's various programs.

Parks Canada's fleet is comprised of approximately 1,400 light vehicles, 400 pieces of heavy equipment and1,000 pieces of off-road and marine equipment such as high-speed snow ploughs, to trucks and cars to snowmobiles and ATVs. The Agency considers green options in every investment decision and has been successful in taking advantage of subsidies offered by other government agencies in greening its fleet.

Materiel Management Framework

The Parks Canada Asset Management Directive (approved by senior management) provides the overall direction for the management of the Agency's assets. In addition, more detailed directives are in place to guide the management of non-capital assets and the fleet. The Asset Management System and the financial system are used to inform materiel management decision-making. Asset condition and performance are assessed and monitored by the operational units.

Periodic evaluations of the asset management framework are undertaken, and asset management policies and practices are revised to address the recommendations.

Capital Asset Management Strategy

To effectively manage its capital program and continue meeting its asset custodial obligations, Parks Canada has invested substantially in increasing its asset management capacity. This includes ensuring the recruitment of asset management professionals, offering regular project management training programs consistent with thePolicy on the Management of Projectsfor all of its Capital asset managers, the hiring of additional staff to oversee project delivery as well as the refinement of investment priorities and the associated asset /risk management frameworks to better achieve outcomes.

The Agency's Investment Plan, when approved, will include investments in capital assets to help address the existing backlog. In addition, the Agency will review its asset holdings to ensure a sustainable capital asset portfolio that is relevant to the achievement of its mandate and well supported by its investment plan.

The Agency will continue implementing new Treasury Board policies in the areas of investment planning and the management of projects which includes improving access to reliable information to better support strategic decision-making.

Parks Canada's planned capital spending for the next five years is presented in the table Summary of Capital Spending by Program Activity, which can be found on the Treasury Board Secretariat's website at http://www.tbs-sct.gc.ca/rpp/2011-2012/index-eng.asp?acr=1800. The planned capital spending combines existing budgets with the continuing funding arising from Canada's Economic Action Plan (CEAP) for investments related to twinning the Trans-Canada Highway through Banff National Park of Canada (funded by CEAP until 2013/14).

This strategy will support the mitigation of the key corporate risk associated with asset management and, will focus on improving the Agency's asset management frameworks based on more robust asset priority and condition information.

Details on Project Spending

(in millions of dollars)
Total Authorities Current Estimated Total Cost Forecast Spending to 31-Mar-11 Planned Spending 2011-12 Planned Spending 2012-13 Planned Spending 2013-14 Future Years Spending
Quebec City - Dufferin Terrace Stabilization and Major Repairs 11.6 9.1 9.1 0.0 0.0 0.0


Trent Severn Waterway - Bolsover Dam at Lock 37 18.8 18.8 1.5 10.3 6.0 1.0 0.0
Riding Mountain National Park of Canada - Wasagaming Waste Water Treatment Plant 18.0 12.7 12.1 0.6 0.0 0.0 0.0
Banff National Park of Canada - Cave and Basin Redevelopment 13.9 13.8 3.5 10.3 0.0 0.0 0.0
Banff National Park of Canada - Trans-Canada Highway Twinning (Gateway and Borders Crossing Fund) 100.0 100.0 61.9 11.9 18.3 7.9 0.0
Banff National Park of Canada - Trans-Canada Highway Twinning (Budget 09/Canada's Economic Action Plan) 130.0 130.0 45.5 33.9 25.3 25.3 0.0

Note: The purpose of this table is to report on projects underway during the reporting period that exceed the Agency's delegated project approval level.

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