Here are my weekly Edmonton notes:
- In case you missed it, City Council approved the 2015 budgets on Thursday. The average tax increase is 5.7%. Here’s a look at what’s coming up at Council this week.
- Lorna Rosen, the City of Edmonton’s CFO, is quitting to become Alberta’s deputy minister of education. She’ll leave her position in January. She has been CFO at the City since May 2010.
- The Edmonton Community Foundation is celebrating 25 years with 25 grants of $25,000. Those grants are over and above other funding for 2014, bringing the total discretionary granting this year to more than $2.4 million.
- More good news for downtown this week: Enbridge announced it will be moving its offices to both Manulife Place and the new Kelly Ramsey Tower. It would have been really disappointing had they moved out of the downtown. The decision enables Enbridge to consolidate 2,500 staff from six different buildings into two across the street from one another.
- According to CMHC, the number of housing starts in Edmonton in November was up year-over-year, and the six month moving average trended at 15,181 units. Both single-detached and multi-family housing starts increased. Despite dropping oil prices, local realtors expect the bullish housing market to continue into 2015.
- The first holiday Checkstops took place last weekend and EPS charged 17 motorists with impaired driving and issued 22 roadside suspensions. The program will continue running throughout December.
- Automated Passport Control kiosks are now in operation at the Edmonton International Airport to make travelling to the US faster and easier. I used one of the kiosks on Sunday when I flew to the US, and it worked really well!
- I missed the #yegsnowfight last weekend as I was travelling, but here’s a recap from co-organizer Jeff Chase and here’s a recap from co-organizer Robin Mazumder.
- The University of Alberta’s board of governors has approved a 2.2% tuition increase for September 2015.
- Students admitted in January 2015 to the University of Lethbridge’s Edmonton campus will be the final group after that school’s board of governors voted to shut the campus down.
- Karen MacKenzie has been appointed to the Edmonton Police Commission for the term January 1, 2015 to December 31, 2016.
- Here’s a great bit of history from Spacing Edmonton: Why are Jasper and Whyte Ave 7 Lanes Wide?
- Premier Jim Prentice has appointed six Canadian leaders to a new advisory committee focused on achieving public service excellence, known as The Premier’s Advisory Committee on the Alberta Public Service.
- Sharon and I both attended The Local Good’s first annual fundraiser on Saturday at Boyle Street Plaza. Here’s a good recap from Elise Stolte. If you want to give to their fundraising campaign, you can do so here.
- I was really sad to hear that Tavern 1903 has closed, apparently due to a disagreement with their sublandlord.
- I haven’t tried it, but Omar makes the new Edmonton Transit app sound like a waste of time.
- The search is on for Edmonton’s next Winter Signature Drink! The final judging event will take place on January 14, 2015.
- I’m excited to go check out the new winter chalet along the trails at Victoria Golf Course. Sponsored by EPCOR, the winter chalet will be open on weekends until March 15 and is stocked with hot chocolate!
- From Sarah Jackson: City of Champions. Edmonton is filled with champions!
Love the lights on the cranes!
- Get into the holiday spirit with Celebrate the Season at the Legislature or Candy Cane Lane! Both are great options given the warm weather.
- The next Meaet event from NextGen takes place on Monday evening.
- The Oil Kings host the Kelowna Rockets on Tuesday evening.
- The next Open Edmonton Meetup takes place on Wednesday evening at Startup Edmonton.
- Thursday is Customer Appreciation Day on 4th Street Promenade! It’s also the grand opening of the newly renovated pocket park.
- The Edmonton Singing Christmas Tree runs Thursday through Sunday at the Jubilee.
- Friday night is Unsilent Night on Alberta Avenue.
- Check out Frostival in McCauley or It’s a Wonderful Whyte on Saturday depending on whether you’re north or south of the river!
- The Oilers host the Dallas Stars on Sunday evening.
- For more upcoming events, check out ShareEdmonton.