By Jamie Rieger
The Village of Foremost had an exceptional year in 2013. From hosting their Centennial to the progress for an unmanned aircraft system testing facility at the airport and a much better than average harvest, it was certainly a good year in Foremost. Near year-end, word came that the UAS project was one step closer to being a reality.
“At the end of 2013, Nav Canada approved our airspace. Now, it has to go to Transport Canada. They may or may not make changes. At least this is a positive step in the right direction,” said Kultgen. “If this gets approval from Transport Canada, it will be the first of its kind in Canada, outside of the military.”
There is some testing going on at the site, but Kultgen said only with a temporary permit.
Also, if it gets approval from Transport Canada, the next step will be to show the Foremost test facility on flight maps, a process that Kultgen said could take one or two months and if all goes as planned the Unmanned Vehicle test site could be up and running by next autumn.
“We have had some good government cooperation with some alterations to boundaries and the landowner concerns, pilot concerns, and village concerns have all been addressed,” he said.
Currently, there is some upgrading being done to the building at the Foremost airport, and Kultgen said once the Transport Canada approval is in place, additional office space and hangars would likely be added, with much of the cost covered through grant funding.
Power lines at each end of the runway have already been buried for the testing, but is also an advantage for medical air transport.
The ongoing project was a highlight in 2013 for the Village of Foremost, but was by no means, the only one.
Last summer, Foremost held its Centennial celebration, an event that brought hundreds of previous residents and newcomers to the village for a weekend of festivities.
“The Centennial was great. I give a lot of credit to all the people who helped out; from the village staff to the heads of the various committees, and to all the volunteers who were tons of help and to all the support we got from people who attended it,” said Kultgen.
A book launch for a new edition of the Foremost History book took place in April, and Kultgen said many community members spent tireless hours getting the history to print.
A new residential subdivision was another highlight for the mayor, saying construction has begun on one home.
With Foremost being an agricultural community, Kultgen said the folks in the area were very pleased with last fall’s harvest.
“We had good moisture and a very good harvest. It was a really great growing year around here.”