The Pacific northwest just got a little more historically symbolic.
The Green Island Lighthouse, located just south of the Alaskan border, gained heritage status by Parks Canada on July 2, along with 20 other B.C. lighthouses.
Many criteria go into deciding whether a Canadian lighthouse is eligible to receive the designation, including historical values or reflecting an important theme in Canadian maritime history, an illustration of the socio-economic development of the associated community, as well as architectural values or an aesthetic/visual quality of the lighthouse, the quality of the design, structural innovation, craftsmanship, materials, optical or audible technologies and functionality and finally, community values or the visual influence on the character of the area.
“The Green Island Lighthouse is an octagonal, tapered, reinforced concrete tower surmounted by an octagonal lantern. As British Columbia’s northernmost lighthouse, just five kilometres from the Alaskan border, it is the first notable landmark that is seen as marine traffic enters Canada,” said the Parks Canada website.
The Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act, developed in May 2008 was adopted to provide a process for the selection and designation of heritage lighthouses, to prevent the unauthorized alteration or disposition of lighthouses that are heritage-designated, to require the lighthouse be reasonably maintained and altered in keeping with the Standards and Guidelines for the Conservation of Historic Places in Canada and to facilitate sales or transfers of lighthouses to promote an ongoing public purpose or new uses for them while ensuring their long-term protection.
Head keeper Serge Pare currently has operated the lighthouse and has been doing so since 1995.
A total of 74 lighthouses throughout Canada were granted heritage status in early July.