Municipal District of Willow Creek
The Land of Endless Opportunities
Population: 5179 (2016)
The M.D.’s adoption of the slogan used to attract European immigrants to Canada's western provinces – “The Last Best West”- evokes the M.D. of Willow Creek’s contemporary spirit of individual self-reliance and sustainable extraction of wealth from the land. M.D. residents consistently choose municipal councils committed to conservation of wide-open spaces where agriculture and energy thrive due to orderly development, and consideration for neighbours. Willow Creek shows no envy for the sprawl of acreages and subdivisions that have broken up the ranches and farms in rural districts closer to Calgary – so much so that the M.D. publishes a firmly worded "Code of the West" that warns city folk of the challenges of building a home on a rural acreage.
To retain its rural character, the M.D. encourages and collaborates with self-governing towns within the M.D. boundary to be the foci of commercial and subdivision development, leaving the M.D. to focus on rural needs.
Willow Creek is an advocate of large-scale energy projects (particularly wind power) that can co-exist with the dominant economic activity – agriculture (ranching and farming). Oil and gas rounds out the economic base.
In World War 2 the Claresholm Airport was the site of a flight training facility. The hangars are now an industrial centre, housing leading edge manufacturing businesses, including green building products and food processing.
- Canada's most extensive windfarm is located in the municipal district.
- Sixty four percent of the municipality's tax income is derived from wind farms, transmission lines, and pipelines and other non-residential energy based assessment.