Strathcona County
Official seal of Strathcona County
Location within Alberta
Location within Alberta
Coordinates: 53°31′24″N 113°18′32″W / 53.52333°N 113.30889°W / 53.52333; -113.30889Coordinates: 53°31′24″N 113°18′32″W / 53.52333°N 113.30889°W / 53.52333; -113.30889
RegionEdmonton Metropolitan Region
Census divisionNo. 11
 - Municipal district1943
 - Specialized municipalityJanuary 1, 1996
Named forDonald Smith, 1st Baron Strathcona and Mount Royal
 • MayorRod Frank
 • Governing body
  • Dave Anderson
  • Katie Berghofer
  • Brian Botterill
  • Linton Delainey
  • Glen Lawrence
  • Robert Parks
  • Paul Smith
  • Bill Tonita
 • SeatSherwood Park
 • Land1,170.65 km2 (451.99 sq mi)
 • Total99,225
 • Density84.8/km2 (220/sq mi)
 • Municipal census (2022)
Time zoneUTC-7 (MST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC-6 (MDT)

Strathcona County is a specialized municipality in the Edmonton Metropolitan Region within Alberta, Canada between Edmonton and Elk Island National Park. It forms part of Census Division No. 11.

Strathcona County is both urban and rural in nature. Approximately 73% of its population lives in Sherwood Park, which is an urban service area east of Edmonton remains an unincorporated hamlet. The balance lives beyond Sherwood Park within a rural service area.


In Treaty 6, the First Nations ceded their title to the land that would become Strathcona County. Local governance began in 1893 when the North-West Territorial Legislature established an area east of Edmonton as Statute Labour District No. 2.[6] It then grew in size over the following decade and was renamed Local Improvement District (LID) No. 517 in 1913.[6] In 1918, LID No. 517 became a municipal district under the name of the Municipal District (MD) of Clover Bar No. 517.[6] At the same time, the neighbouring LID No. 518 to the south became the MD of Strathcona No. 518.[6]

The MD of Clover Bar No. 517 and the MD of Strathcona No. 518 amalgamated on March 1, 1943 into a larger municipal district under the name of the MD of Strathcona No. 517.[7] It was subsequently renumbered as the MD of Strathcona No. 83 in 1945.[6] Upon further amalgamating with the Clover Bar School Division No. 13,[6] the MD of Municipal District No. 83 incorporated as a county under the name of the County of Strathcona No. 20 on January 1, 1962.[7] Its county status reverted to municipal district status in 1995 when the County Act was repealed by the provincial legislature though its name remained County of Strathcona No. 20.[6] Its name was officially changed to Strathcona County on April 26, 1995.[7] Shortly thereafter, Strathcona County's status was changed from municipal district to specialized municipality on January 1, 1996.[7]

The purpose of Strathcona County's change to specialized municipality status was to provide "for the unique needs of a municipality that includes both a large urban centre and a significant rural territory and population."[7] The status change specifically designated Strathcona County's large urban centre, Sherwood Park, as an urban service area deemed equivalent to a city.[8] Its remaining rural territory was specifically designated a rural service area deemed equivalent to a municipal district.[8]


Strathcona County is in the central portion of the province of Alberta[9] and forms the eastern portion of the Edmonton Metropolitan Region.[10] It borders Lamont County to the northeast, Improvement District No. 13 (Elk Island National Park) to the east, Beaver County to the southeast, Leduc County to the south, the City of Edmonton to the west, the City of Fort Saskatchewan to the northeast, and Sturgeon County to the north.[9] The North Saskatchewan River forms its municipal boundary with Sturgeon County.[9] Some of its water bodies include Cooking Lake, Half Moon, and Hastings Lake.[9]

Communities and localities

The following localities are located within Strathcona County.[13]



Federal census
population history
Source: Statistics Canada

In the 2021 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Strathcona County had a population of 99,225 living in 37,128 of its 38,203 total private dwellings, a change of 1.2% from its 2016 population of 98,024. With a land area of 1,170.65 km2 (451.99 sq mi), it had a population density of 84.8/km2 (219.5/sq mi) in 2021.[4]

Strathcona County municipal census population breakdown
Component[24] 2022 population[5] 2018 population[24] 2015 population[24]
Sherwood Park urban service area 73,000 71,332 68,782
Rural service area 27,362 27,049 26,815
– Hamlet of Antler Lake 435
– Hamlet of Ardrossan 532
– Hamlet of Collingwood Cove 376
– Hamlet of Half Moon Lake 214
– Hamlet of Hastings Lake 104
– Hamlet of Josephburg 118
– Hamlet of North Cooking Lake 57
– Hamlet of South Cooking Lake 270
Total Strathcona County 100,362 98,381 95,597

The population of Strathcona County according to its 2018 municipal census is 98,381, a change of 2.9% from its 2015 municipal census population of 95,597.[24] Its 2018 population includes 71,332 or 72.5% living in the Sherwood Park urban service area and 27,049 or 27.5% in the rural service area.[24]

In the 2016 Census of Population conducted by Statistics Canada, Strathcona County had a population of 98,044 living in 35,567 of its 36,354 total private dwellings, a change of 6% from its 2011 population of 92,490. With a land area of 1,182.78 km2 (456.67 sq mi), it had a population density of 82.9/km2 (214.7/sq mi) in 2016.[23]



Strathcona County has over $12.0 billion worth of industrial projects completed, announced, or under construction.[25] This is aided in part by the concentration of oil refineries on the west side of Sherwood Park. This district, known as Refinery Row, includes some of the largest industrial facilities in Western Canada, such as Imperial's Strathcona Refinery. Originally built in the 1940s, a new refinery was constructed in 1976 and is one of the largest refining facilities in Canada.[26] As well, the Suncor's Edmonton Refinery produces 142,000 barrels per day (22,600 m3/d) of gasoline, diesel, jet fuel, and aviation gasoline. This refinery sits on 247 hectares of land and has been operating for over 65 years.[27] A founding member of Alberta's Industrial Heartland, Strathcona County is home to Canada's largest hydrocarbon refining cluster.[28]

The leading industries in Strathcona County as of 2020 are extraction, manufacturing, scientific, construction, trucking and engineering.


Strathcona County is home to more than 11,000 businesses, with 3,500 of those businesses comprising employees. A market area population of 1.4 million has resulted in household spending power of $5.6 billion. Strathcona County has over 15,800 highly-skilled graduates available with 94% of residents holding a diploma, certificate, or degree. Within the active business community, there are several resources available to local entrepreneurs to help support their businesses:[29][30]

Arts and culture

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Strathcona County Library is a publicly funded library with its main branch in Sherwood Park. Its bookmobile provides service to rural residents through 14 regular weekly stops.


Elk Island National Park is adjacent to Strathcona County to the east.[9]


Unlike most Albertan municipal districts, where council appoints a reeve, Strathcona County elects a mayor. Rod Frank was elected in 2017,[31] replacing Roxanne Carr who was elected in 2013.



Strathcona County is home to two public airports. Cooking Lake Airport, which operates as a condo board, accommodates 87 per cent of Strathcona County's public aeronautical transportation needs.[32][33] It is also the oldest operating public airport in Canada and approved for international flights under the Canada Border Services Agency CANPASS program.[34]

The Warren Thomas Aerodrome, better known as the Josephburg Airport, serves the remaining 13 per cent of Strathcona County's public aeronautical transportation needs.


The following provincial highways service Strathcona County.[9]


Main article: Strathcona County Transit

This section needs expansion. You can help by adding to it. (October 2021)

See also


  1. ^ Strathcona County (2010-04-27). "Local Government History". Strathcona County. Retrieved 2010-10-02.
  2. ^ Alberta Municipal Affairs (2010-09-17). "Municipal Profile – Strathcona County". Retrieved 2010-10-02.
  3. ^ "Municipal Officials Search". Alberta Municipal Affairs. May 9, 2019. Retrieved October 1, 2021.
  4. ^ a b c d "Population and dwelling counts: Canada, provinces and territories, and census subdivisions (municipalities)". Statistics Canada. February 9, 2022. Retrieved February 9, 2022.
  5. ^ a b "Strathcona County 2022 Municipal Census: Census results summary" (PDF). Strathcona County. Retrieved September 15, 2022.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g "Local government timeline". Strathcona County. March 3, 2021. Retrieved October 19, 2021.
  7. ^ a b c d e "Location and History Profile – Strathcona County" (PDF). Alberta Municipal Affairs. October 15, 2021. Retrieved October 19, 2021.
  8. ^ a b "Order in Council (O.C.) 761/95" (PDF). Province of Alberta. December 6, 1995. Retrieved October 19, 2021.
  9. ^ a b c d e f 2021 Provincial Base Map: Municipalities (PDF) (Map). Alberta Environment and Parks. July 26, 2021. Retrieved October 19, 2021.
  10. ^ "Edmonton Metropolitan Region". Edmonton Metropolitan Region Board. March 26, 2018. Retrieved October 19, 2021.
  11. ^ "Fort Saskatchewan, City (Census Subdivision), Alberta". Statistics Canada. 2012-06-20. Retrieved 2012-08-13.
  12. ^ a b c d "Specialized and Rural Municipalities and Their Communities" (PDF). Alberta Municipal Affairs. January 12, 2022. Retrieved January 21, 2022.
  13. ^ "Standard Geographical Classification (SGC) 2006, Economic Regions: 4811052 - Strathcona County, geographical codes and localities, 2006". Statistics Canada. 2010-03-05. Retrieved 2012-08-11.
  14. ^ a b c Geo-Administrative Areas (Hamlet, Locality and Townsite Culture Points) (Geodatabase layer) (Map). AltaLIS. October 26, 2020. Retrieved October 2, 2021.((cite map)): CS1 maint: date and year (link)
  15. ^ "Table 6a: Population by census divisions and subdivisions showing reorganization of rural areas, 1931-1946". Census of the Prairie Provinces, 1946. Vol. I: Population. Ottawa: Dominion Bureau of Statistics. 1949. p. 424.
  16. ^ "Table 6: Population by sex, for census subdivisions, 1956 and 1951". Census of Canada, 1956. Vol. I: Population. Ottawa: Dominion Bureau of Statistics. 1958.
  17. ^ "Table 9: Population by census subdivisions, 1966 by sex, and 1961". 1966 Census of Canada. Western Provinces. Vol. Population: Divisions and Subdivisions. Ottawa: Dominion Bureau of Statistics. 1967.
  18. ^ "Table 3: Population for census divisions and subdivisions, 1971 and 1976". 1976 Census of Canada. Census Divisions and Subdivisions, Western Provinces and the Territories. Vol. Population: Geographic Distributions. Ottawa: Statistics Canada. 1977.
  19. ^ "Table 2: Census Subdivisions in Alphabetical Order, Showing Population Rank, Canada, 1981". 1981 Census of Canada. Vol. Census subdivisions in decreasing population order. Ottawa: Statistics Canada. 1982. ISBN 0-660-51563-6.
  20. ^ "Table 2: Population and Dwelling Counts, for Census Divisions and Census Subdivisions, 1986 and 1991 – 100% Data". 91 Census. Vol. Population and Dwelling Counts – Census Divisions and Census Subdivisions. Ottawa: Statistics Canada. 1992. pp. 100–108. ISBN 0-660-57115-3.
  21. ^ "Population and Dwelling Counts, for Canada, Provinces and Territories, and Census Divisions, 2001 and 1996 Censuses – 100% Data (Alberta)". Statistics Canada. Retrieved 2019-05-25.
  22. ^ "Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, and census subdivisions (municipalities), 2006 and 2001 censuses – 100% data (Alberta)". Statistics Canada. January 6, 2010. Retrieved 2019-05-25.
  23. ^ a b "Population and dwelling counts, for Canada, provinces and territories, and census subdivisions (municipalities), 2016 and 2011 censuses – 100% data (Alberta)". Statistics Canada. February 8, 2017. Retrieved February 8, 2017.
  24. ^ a b c d e "Census 2018 Results Report" (PDF). Strathcona County. August 30, 2018. Retrieved October 19, 2021.
  25. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2020-02-19. Retrieved 2020-02-19.((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  26. ^
  27. ^ "Edmonton Refinery – Refining and Marketing".
  28. ^
  29. ^ "Business educational opportunities".
  30. ^ "Business visitation programs".
  31. ^ "2017 Election Results". Strathcona County. Retrieved 19 October 2017.
  32. ^ Aubrianna, Snow (July 21, 2018). "Condo board that represents private airport wants public dollars". Forsaskonline.
  33. ^ Johannsson, Jim (August 10, 2018). "Airport continues fight on taxes". Sherwood Park News. Retrieved September 1, 2018.
  34. ^ Westhaver, Eric (September 23, 2015). "Edmonton-area airport now accepting international flights". Global News. Retrieved September 1, 2018.