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Understanding and managing the effects of residential tourism on quality of life in Fernie

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(Project) M.R.M.
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Globalization and the subsequent innovations in technology, communications, and transportation have stimulated an increase in human mobility. A part of this trend involves movement of entrepreneurs, employees of relatively 'foot loose' firms, retirees, and residential tourists (RTs) to areas possessing high quality natural and cultural amenities. RTs are those who eventually purchase property in these places and use those assets on a non-permanent basis. Their effects on tourism areas are largely unknown. This research employs a case study approach to understand RTs and identify planning responses to the pressures that they place on Fernie. Four key challenges to Fernie's overall quality of life are identified: low occupancy of properties, reduced housing affordability, expansive land development, and displacement of residents. RTs also create significant opportunities. Key informants point to the potential to leverage RT human and social capital, and environmental preferences as agents for community development and quality of life enhancement.
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