Here are my weekly Edmonton notes:
- It was a busy week for provincial politics! Monday saw the publication of a new poll showing a steep drop in support for the Alberta Progressive Conservatives as well as the throne speech, which was somewhat overshadowed by the airplane scandal. Thursday saw the release of the budget, which contained some good news for Edmonton but also showed a continued lack of investment in LRT by the Province.
- Mayor Don Iveson delivered his first State of the City address on Wednesday, and called on the Province to “show Alberta’s capital city that we are worth investing in.”
- Edmonton-Centre MP Laurie Hawn has decided to retire when the next election is called. He won the seat in 2006.
- The City is looking to take advantage of the warm weather and will begin blading neighbourhood streets just after midnight tonight. There is no parking ban in place, but residents are asked to move their vehicles wherever possible.
- Congratulations to the folks behind Light the Bridge. The $2.5 million needed to buy and install LED lights on the High Level Bridge has been raised! You can buy replacement bulbs until March 14.
- Edmonton has been named Canada’s Earth Hour Capital City for 2014. Earth Hour takes plce from 8:30-9:30pm on March 29.
- The Conference Board of Canada believes the prairie cities will once again lead Canadian metropolitan areas in economic growth in 2014. Edmonton is expected to experience growth of 3.4% this year, down from 4.6% in 2013.
- The latest building permits report (PDF) shows that Edmonton’s residential permits issued in January were worth $397.3 million, the highest value recorded since 1989.
- Iceland has been on a marketing blitz here in Edmonton, but we’re not doing the same thing in Reykjavik. Maybe we should be.
- The City may be looking into widening 75 Street. If the reason is to reduce congestion as Councillor Anderson suggests, then let’s hope the City does its homework on induced demand first. It may be that the upgrade is needed, but don’t dress it up in some fantasy about reducing congestion, because it won’t.
- Congratulations to Poppy Barley on some national attention in The Globe and Mail!
- Consulting service Gen Y Inc. recently featured 12 of Edmonton’s most accomplished young professionals. Look for part 2 to be published soon.
- Edmonton is going to be testing two electric buses this spring, the second Canadian city to do so. They run on batteries.
- Hungry? Then don’t click this link: The Second Annual Tomato Top 100 Best Things to Eat in Edmonton.
- ISBE Edmonton has decided to close its doors, saying “we built our art gallery in the wrong part of town.”
- The Oilers had a busy week, trading Ales Hemsky to Ottawa, acquiring Viktor Fasth from the Ducks, trading Ilya Bryzgalov to the Wild, trading Nick Schultz to Columbus, and signing Ben Scrivens to a two-year deal. Wayne Gretzky was also in town for the game against the Islanders, and he offered a vote of confidence in Craig MacTavish.
- Yesterday was International Women’s Day. Here in Edmonton, Mayor Iveson made the proclamation at an event at the Winspear Centre.
- The Edmonton Rush defeated the Vancouver Stealth on Saturday night to extend their winning streak to 9, setting a new NLL record for the best-ever start to a regular season.
- There are a number of meetups taking place this week at Startup Edmonton: the Edmonton Python Meetup is Monday night, the GameCamp Edmonton Meetup is Wednesday night, and the Physical Computing Meetup is Thursday night.
- Wednesday evening is the Every Woman Festival, taking place at Lexus South Pointe.
- Homeward Trust will present the 2014 ROOPH Awards during lunch on Thursday.
- The Edmonton Woman of Vision luncheon takes place on Friday at the Shaw Conference Centre.
- Like a challenge? Try not to get lost in the pedway on Friday night during Pedcrawl!
- iMEDIA 2014 takes place this weekend at the Fantasyland Hotel.
- Edmonton Tourism invites you to say farewell to winter on a patio this weekend!
- Head down to the Alberta Avenue community hall on Sunday for Edmonton Seedy Sunday!
- For more upcoming events, check out ShareEdmonton.
The volunteers behind Pecha Kucha Night in Edmonton! Photo by Warren Fenton