2017 Award of Merit – Documentation and planning

The North Pacific Cannery Conservation Master Plan

The North Pacific Cannery’s association with the West Coast fishing industry is remarkable for its diversity and lengthy duration. Its operative life as a salmon cannery is unrivalled in
the province. Its involvement in other aspects of the industry— notably can manufacturing, boat storage and maintenance, fresh fish storage and shipment as well as fish reduction—is similarly broader than those of other extant canneries. Unlike southern canneries, the North Pacific’s setting has remained remarkably unchanged since construction of the access road in 1959. The cannery complex is visually isolated and devoid of modern encroachments, in marked contrast to the circumstances at Steveston, which was the home port for many canneries. In 1985, the North Pacific Cannery was designated a National Historic Site by Parks Canada to commemorate the role that the industrial fishery played in the economic and cultural development of North Western British Columbia, Canada and the continent. The North Pacific Cannery is a very complex site with many levels of heritage values and physical constraints. As part of its ongoing conservation and interpretation, which will support many on-site functions, the tangible expression of the values – the site’s character-defining elements – need to be safeguarded. This currently involves a program of stabilization and restoration that will lead to long-term protection of the site.

The development of this overall Conservation Master Plan is based on many years of ongoing efforts to preserve the site. It gathers up and assesses information from many previous studies, and will guide further work undertaken onsite while managing the significance of the historic place. The format of this Plan follows the methodology outlined by the BC Heritage Branch for conservation planning for historic places in British Columbia. In addition it follows best practices for conservation planning as detailed in the Standards and Guidelines for the Conservation of Historic Places in Canada.


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