Here are my weekly Edmonton notes:
- As of Thursday, Edmontonians had already called in 3,176 pothole complaints, up from just 142 a the same time in 2012. Yikes!
- After meeting with the Province, it seems the City is ready to scale back the Downtown Revitalization Levy. The low-end projection is now just $612 million, enough to cover the cost of the downtown arena, but perhaps not the many other important downtown projects that are relying on the CRL for funding.
- Municipal Affairs Minister Doug Griffiths on the suggestion that the Province expropriate the City Centre Airport lands from the City: “Why would we spend $500 million just to upset a municipality that has a population close to a third of the entire province?”
- Council gave the Horse Hill ASP first and second reading this week, giving preliminary approval to the area that could be home to 70,000 residents one day. It’ll now be considered by the Capital Region Board before returning to Council for third reading and final approval. Here’s the speech that Janelle Herbert from Riverbend Gardens made at the public hearing (her farm could be significantly affected by the proposed highway).
- We need to repair and preserve the McKay Avenue School. If you haven’t already done so, read Paula’s important piece here.
- I can’t wait to go check out the new Jasper Place branch of the Edmonton Public Library. The LEED Silver building cost $14 million and features an undulating concrete roof with no support pillars inside. The original Jasper Place Library was built in 1961, was repurposed in 1988, and was shut down two years ago to make way for the new building.
- Edgar Schmidt, Superintendent of EPSB, announced his retirement this week. He’ll step down effective August 31.
- The multi-sport park site at Ellerslie Road and 50 Street has been named Ivor Dent Sports Park after the former mayor who was “instrumental in bringing the Commonwealth Games to Edmonton 35 years ago.”
- ETS has now begun replacing the rails between Churchill and Central, which means you can expect delays on the LRT until the end of April.
- There’s a page on Facebook called Save The Walterdale Bridge that was created on February 10 (I think by ETS Operator Mike Royer). It has already amassed over 1000 likes. “Why spend $4 Million to demolish a piece of our history, when we can retain it for cyclists and pedestrians and create something unique?”
- The City has improved its online registration system to enable reservations for picnic sites, gazebos, and outdoor tennis courts.
- Is your bus route the 6 or 33? If so, you might have been one of ETS’ new compressed natural gas buses, undergoing testing as part of a two-year pilot project.
- Could cuts and tuition hikes be on the way for the University of Alberta? President Indira Samarasekera has called for a change in the U of A’s funding model, saying that “one size does not fit all.”
Fear upon the bridge, by Justin Piercy.
Here are some upcoming events:
- Thursday is budget day, so be prepared for a wave of provincial news this week!
- This Old Edmonton House is back, with the first seminar taking place tomorrow. There are a variety of topics being featured until April 17.
- The next Green Drinks event takes place on Wednesday, and the topic this time is YEG Hidden Gems!
- The City is working with Strathcona County to widen 34 Street from Whitemud Drive to Baseline Road. There’s an information session taking place on Wednesday.
- This year’s SkirtsAfire arts festival kicks off on Thursday on Alberta Avenue.
- Also Thursday is Edmonton’s 15th Pecha Kucha Night, taking place this time at the Edmonton Expo Centre.
- The Canadian Business Leader Award Dinner takes place on Thursday at the Shaw Conference Centre. Pat Daniel, former CEO and President of Enbridge Inc., is this year’s recipient.
- The Alberta Aboriginal Youth Achievement Awards take place on Friday at the Winspear Centre.
- The Price is Right Live! takes place at the Jubilee Auditorium on Sunday.
- BlogWest takes place Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at The Westin.
- Alberta’s Kevin Martin finally scored a win today, defeating BC 10-3. The Brier continues through Sunday.
- For more events, check out ShareEdmonton.
Groat, by Darren Kirby.
Next weekend is Daylight Saving Time, so heads up that we lose an hour on March 10!