Community Description

The District of Chetwynd is a small town in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in Northeastern British Columbia, Canada. Situated on an ancient floodplain, it’s the first town encountered after emerging from the Rockies along Highway 97 and acts as the gateway to the Peace River Country.

The town developed during the construction of infrastructure through the Rocky Mountains in the 1950s, and was used as a transshipment point during the construction of hydroelectric dams in the 1960s and 1970s and the new town of Tumbler Ridge in the early 1980s. Home to approximately 2,600 residents, the population has increased little in the last 25 years but is significantly younger than the provincial average.

Once known as Little Prairie, the community adopted its current name in honour of provincial politician Ralph L.T. Chetwynd just prior to its incorporation in 1962. The 64 square kilometers (25 sq mi) municipality consists of the town, a community forest, and four exclave properties. Chetwynd has dozens of chainsaw carvings displayed throughout town as public art. Nearby, there are four provincial parks, two lakes, and several recreational trails.

Highways 29 and 97 intersect in town with Highway 97 connecting it to Prince George and Dawson Creek and Highway 29 to Tumbler Ridge and Hudson’s Hope. A rail line branches off in three directions: northward to Fort St. John and east to Dawson Creek and west through the Rockies to Prince George.

Its economy is dominated by the primary industries of forestry, fossil fuel extraction and transportation.

Community Links

Chetwynd, BC
Chetwynd Echo Newspaper
Chamber of Commerce
BC Tourism
Council of Forest Industries
Nothern Lights College

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