Happy Halloween! Here are my weekly Edmonton notes:
- City Council this week approved metal detectors and bag searches for Council Chambers at City Hall, and also voted to build a half wall with a glass partition to separate themselves from the public. The Journal’s editorial put it bluntly: “Our elected officials don’t belong behind glass.” Even worse, the decision was made in private. Councillor Mike Nickel said Administration has “been obstructionist” about releasing information to the public. I think less should be done in camera at Council but am reasonably happy with initiatives like Open City that are pushing the City to be more transparent with citizens.
- In other Council news this week, they voted to no longer sit on the Northlands board citing a conflict of interest.
- The proposed 2017-2018 Utility Budget calls for a rate increase of $1.90 per month for waste services and $1.00 per month for drainage services for typical residential customers. That’s less than was expected based on the three-year budget Council passed last year.
- Smart Bus Technology has now been installed on all 928 buses in the ETS fleet. That means you can get real-time route information for every bus in the city through an app, or in the Open Data Catalogue.
- You probably saw the New York Times feature on the Edmonton Oilers and Connor McDavid. It’s really not about our city at all, but that ddn’t stop the inevitable “back on the map” comments. I’m with Stacey Brotzel on this one.
- The doors are finally open at the brand new Hyatt Place Edmonton on 96 Street in The Quarters. The hotel has 255 rooms and 32 suites.
- Fixing Edmonton’s back alleys could require a 1.27% tax increase. There are 1,175 km of back alleys in the City.
- Alex Prior is the new chief conductor of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra. At 24, he’s less than half the age of the 51-year-old Bill Eddins, who he is replacing.
- The YMCA of Northern Alberta has announced it will be closing its downtown Edmonton housing complex next year, forcing about 120 people to find new homes.
- Bernie Kollman has been appointed Board Chair with Travel Alberta for another year. Congrats Bernie! It’s great to have such a respected Edmontonian in that position.
- The City has released a new app called WasteWise, to help you sort your recyclables and trash. Get in in the app stores or at edmonton.ca/waste.
- Michael Ross has taken a look at gender quality during the last municipal election. “There was absolutely no chance of there being anywhere from 9-13 women on council, as 5 races were contested solely by men.”
- Thursday was Curb the Danger day in Edmonton to celebrate “10 successful years of intercepting and removing impaired drivers from Edmonton streets.”
- Eat Alberta is looking for new volunteers to join their organizing team. “Eat Alberta is a non-for-profit organization, run entirely by volunteers, based in Edmonton that focuses on helping Albertans learn about food through a mix of small events, classes, multimedia content, and our annual flagship Conference event.”
- Now that the food truck season is largely over, we’re thinking about 2017. You can help us plan – please fill out the quick What the Truck?! 2016 Season Survey.
- For more recent headlines, check out ShareEdmonton.
Brick and the Blues, photo by Jeff Wallace
- Lots of Halloween events took place this week but there are still a few to check out – here’s Linda’s listing. And here’s a bonus Halloween post from Linda – how to make your own Snapchat filter costume!
- Edmonton’s NextGen is hosting a volunteer recruitment event on Tuesday at City Hall.
- The next Green Drinks event takes place on Wednesday at Yellowhead Brewery. The theme this edition is Good Business.
- Rodeo Week kicks off on Friday! The annual Chili Cook-off takes place at Churchill Square on Friday during lunch.
- Learn all about the historic Mercer Warehouse at L.I.T. on Location taking place on Friday afternoon.
- Head over to the Shaw Conference Centre on Friday and Saturday for the Rocky Mountain Wine & Food Festival.
- Method Man & Redman are performing at Union Hall on Friday.
- The Alberta Ballet’s Dracula takes place at the Jubilee on Friday and Saturday.
- Winter City Footie Fest takes place on Saturday at Churchill Square. Go cheer on FC Edmonton!
- The Eskimos host the Argonauts at Commonwealth Stadium on Saturday.
- Chicago and Earth Wind & Fire are playing Rogers Place on Saturday.
- The Writer’s Union of Canada is hosting a YouthWrite Fundraiser on Sunday at Latitude 53 featuring Marilyn Dumont, Minister Faust, and others.
- For more upcoming events, check out ShareEdmonton.