Forget lines drawn in the sand, the group in charge of adding electoral districts to the province have redrawn the borders to BC's federal riding map.
The Federal Electoral Boundaries Commission for BC has put out their proposed layout for public comment. The three-member group was tasked with adding six electoral districts to accommodate the province's population increase.
According to the 2011 census, the population has grown to 4.4 million from 3.9 million since the last review in 2001, creating a need for BC's representation in the House of Commons to grow to 42 seats from 36.
According the the commission's proposal, the riding of Prince George-Peace River will have to grow beyond its already 237,000 square kilometres to accommodate the downsize in neighbouring Kamloops-Thompson-Cariboo, and will stretch down to encompass Valemount and Mt. Robson.
Current Prince George-Peace River MP Bob Zimmer said he would welcome the addition.
"We already have McBride and to go to Valemount really isn't that much further of a drive for me," Zimmer said. "Our riding's already so big, so it doesn't bother me at all."
No changes are proposed for the riding of Cariboo-Prince George. The majority of the new ridings are proposed for the Lower Mainland in areas such as the North Shore, Chilliwack and Vancouver as well as in the Okanagan and Kamloops.
Under last December's Electoral Boundaries Readjustment Act, each provincial commission's focus is to divide the province into districts that are as close to the average population as possible.
Zimmer said the population of his riding has essentially stayed the same, but "in order to accommodate that growth down south we've had to adjust our borders and make them slightly bigger."
In drawing the new map, the commission also looked at historical patterns and community interest and identity, according to commission chair John Hall.
"We also bore in mind the proper representation of First Nations communities and residents of the northern electoral districts," he said.
Residents are invited to share their views on the proposed federal electoral map at a series of public hearings in September. The Prince George hearing takes place at Coast Inn of the North on Sept. 17 at 2 p.m. Those wishing to make a presentation at the meeting are asked to their information to the commission no later than Aug. 30. For more information about what to send and where, visit www.federal-redistribution.ca.