Accessibility upgrades at Tse’K’wa are expected to be completed this week.
Executive director of the Tse’K’wa Heritage Society, Alyssa Currie, said these new upgrades will provide more accessibility to the outhouse and archeology dome at the historic site.
“We did have non-accessible access to our outhouses previously, but this enhancement will ensure that the slope meets the three-degree grade required for accessible standards,” said Currie.
She added a more gradual slope will make things easier for people with mobility issues, wheelchair users, and people who want to come in with kids and bring strollers.
“When we first started with the infrastructure developments, we worked closely with Access BC and Spinal Cord Injury BC to identify areas of priority and found out that accessible bathrooms and accessible parking were the main priorities for the people,” said Currie.
“Without these upgrades, the site as a whole is not accessible,” Currie said.
Other recent upgrades on the site include an interpretive trail to Kwą̂-ẕâa watsáádzéʔ (old camp), an accessible ramp to the patio, and universal design outhouses and a picnic table.
Currie feels the upgrades at the site are crucial as they give access to everyone, especially people with disabilities, and let them experience the Dane-zaa culture.
“We are also doing all this work intending to make the site as friendly to as many people as possible, regardless of their physical abilities and cultural backgrounds,” said Currie.
“We’re creating something that’ll help for the future, and we couldn’t have done this without the support we got from Northern BC Tourism and our corporate sponsors,” said Currie.
With Tse’K’wa being a significant archeological site, Currie says precautions have been put in place to preserve the archeological history of the site.
She hopes the site’s upgrades will allow residents to form a cultural connection with the historic site.
Tse’K’wa was designated as a historical site by Parks Canada in 2019 and was purchased by local First Nations in 2012.
Manavpreet Singh, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Energeticcity.ca