News release

Civic Address Project Puts Shelburne County on the Map

SERVICE N.S./MUNICIPAL RELATONS--Civic Address Project Puts Shelburne County On The Map


During the next few weeks, you may notice some unusual activity around the county. Slow moving trucks. Strangers pointing instruments at your property. It's all part of a project that will record precise locations for almost every building and facility in the province.

Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations is working with the Town of Shelburne, the Town of Lockeport, the Municipality of the District of Shelburne, the Municipality of the District of Barrington and a private contractor to map civic addresses in the region. It's an important project that could have life and death implications.

For example, suppose there was an emergency in your home or business. You call 911 and fret through every precious minute as you wait for an ambulance to arrive. Where could it be? It's possible the driver can't find your home because your address numbers aren't visible from the street. The ambulance crew simply can't find your home.

This isn't just an issue for rural dwellers. For example, an industrial plant might have a building known to employees as the Welding Shop. But the building might not have an address number; it might not even be on a named street. Situations like this make it difficult to dispatch emergency vehicles when every second is critical.

After the Civic Addressing Project is complete, fire, police and ambulance services will have an accurate, mapped location for every home, farm, factory, business and public facility in the province.

Here's what's involved. Service Nova Scotia first meets with your municipality, emergency services, provincial agencies like Emergency Measures Organization and federal agencies to agree on things like municipal boundaries, service areas and such. Existing information will be checked and then used as a starting point.

Then, survey crews will fan out across the county to inventory buildings and facilities. This may be a case of stopping in front of your home or business for 10-15 minutes and recording information on instruments in their vehicle. For larger properties -- or properties set in from the road -- the survey crews may need to come on your property with hand-held technical equipment to get a more accurate reading. If you want to know more about the process, feel free to ask the survey crew. They will tell you what they are doing and will likely offer you a Civic Addressing Project brochure.

All survey vehicles will have a Service Nova Scotia sign bearing the Nova Scotia Civic Address Project name.

After the survey is complete, another team will verify the information that was collected by the first team.

From there, the database will be plotted on high-resolution computerized maps and shared with government offices for planning use and with emergency services to improve response times. The municipality will keep the province informed about new roads and addresses, to keep the map up-to-date.

Private sector agencies like Canada Post and transportation providers will all benefit from the new, accurate addressing information.

The Civic Address Project started in Cumberland County in 2000 and has been working its way across the province since then. After Shelburne County, the teams will move on to Queens and expect to wrap up their survey work later this year.

Even after the Civic Address Project maps are complete, it's still a good idea to post your address number where people can see it from the street. It makes your home or business easier for people to find. In many communities, local volunteer fire departments provide proper address signs for a nominal fee.

For more information about what makes an easily visible address, or to confirm your correct address, contact your municipal office at the numbers below. Or visit the Service Nova Scotia civic addressing Web site: www.gov.ns.ca/snsmr/land/programs/civic/default.asp .

So if you notice the survey crews around, there's no need for alarm. Service Nova Scotia and your municipality are hard at work, improving our services to you.

FOR BROADCAST USE:

Shelburne County residents may notice some survey vehicles travelling the county in the coming weeks. There's no cause for alarm, it's part of a government program to map local roads, addresses and buildings.

Two survey teams will pass through the county. The first team will record geographic positioning information using equipment that interprets satellite signals. The second team will spot check the information gathered by the first team.

Service Nova Scotia says the real benefit of accurate maps will be for emergency services, who will be able to pinpoint a location to within two metres. Municipal officials will also tap the information for planning use.

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Contacts:

Kevin Finch
Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations 902-424-2733 E-Mail:
Carl Smith
Municipality of the District of Shelburne 902-873-3083
Andrew Goreham
Municipality of the District of Barrington 902-637-2015