It has been a couple of weeks since my last update, but I have a good excuse (which you can read about below). Here are my weekly Edmonton notes:
- Talk about a punch to the gut: “The city auditor issued a scathing critique of Edmonton’s waste management centre Thursday, a facility that’s been touted as best in class for years.” Turns out we’re nowhere close to the goal of diverting 90% of residential waste from landfill, and in fact our diversion rate has been trending down! Very disappointing.
- DeepMind has announced funding for an endowed chair in the University of Alberta’s computing science department. “The new endowed research chair will be given full academic freedom to explore any interest that could advance the field of artificial intelligence, with the lab hoping its offer will attract a senior researcher with international renown.”
- Details have been released for the 2018 Grey Cup which will take place right here in Edmonton from November 21-25. “Edmontonians love to rally behind a theme and in keeping with tradition, this year’s Grey Cup Festival will be focused on the city’s warm and welcoming hospitality,” said Brad Sparrow, Co-Chair of the Grey Cup Festival. The theme this year is “Bring the Heat”.
- Congratulations to Chris LaBossiere and the team at Yardstick Software on the acquisition of Banister Research.
- Why is it that people come to Edmonton to stay and don’t even realize it? Rita Neyer explores Still in Edmonton over at The Wanderer.
- A City auditor’s report found a number of issues with last year’s municipal election, including a ballot box being left behind at a voting station. Overall though, the report found fewer issues than in 2013.
- Elise has the scoop on new rules for developing highrise towers across Edmonton.
- A new customer satisfaction survey has found that “89 per cent of respondents were satisfied with their experience using 311 in 2017.”
- Edmonton has committed to continue with the FIFA 2026 bid process as City Council has agreed to support our city “as a candidate host city for the United Bid, a unique tri-country bid that brings together Canada, USA and Mexico.”
- City Council has decided to keep looking at options for the pool at City Hall, even if they might have to spend a bit more. I understand that there are new provincial safety standards that the pool must comply with but is keeping the pool open with similar characteristics to today worth hundreds of thousands of dollars?
- A new pilot program will rent out vacant municipal land to gardeners for a $100 fee starting this spring. “Applications for the pilot will be available on Feb. 12 with a deadline to apply by April 15.”
- There’s a new climate change exhibition called Climate Change is Here now on display at the Meadows Community Recreation Centre. You can see it there until March 17.
- Dave Mowat, ATB Financial’s well-known president and CEO, will retire from his position on June 30. His successor is expected to be announced in May.
- Prime Minister Justin Trudeau faced a tough crowd here in Edmonton on Thursday evening. “Trudeau entered the hall in Edmonton’s MacEwan University to mixed chorus of applause and boos. His answers were interrupted periodically through the night by angry shouts, although Trudeau never lost his composure.”
- The next application deadline for the Edmonton Community Foundation’s Young Edmonton Grants is February 15.
- You’ve got until Tuesday to head over to Bonnie Doon to see a mockup of the new LRT cars that will run along the Valley Line when it opens in 2020.
- Apparently there were more than 180 collisions in Edmonton on Friday thanks to all the snow. Drive safe!
- For more recent headlines, check out ShareEdmonton.
Winter Ride, photo by IQRemix
- The Oilers are back in action this week hosting the Avalanche on Monday evening at Rogers Place.
- Wildfire, which is Rapid Fire Theatre’s annual teen improv festival, starts on Tuesday and runs until the 24th.
- eHUB at the University of Alberta is hosting a breakfast event on Tuesday with Dan McEleney, co-founder of Gfycat.
- Evolving Infill is hosting two workshops this week: Tuesday at the Commonwealth Recreation Centre, and Wednesday at Beacon Heights School.
- Wednesday is Winter Walk Day! Bundle up!
- The Local Good is hosting Green Drinks: Good Allies at the Yellowhead Brewery on Wednesday evening.
- The North Central Alberta Teacher’s Convention takes place at the Shaw Conference Centre on Thursday and Friday.
- Should Alberta have one public school system or two? That question will be debated at an event on Thursday night at the Telus Centre.
- The 2018 Edmonton RV Expo & Sale is on at the Edmonton Expo Centre from Thursday through Sunday.
- This year’s edition of the Canadian Birkebeiner Ski Festival takes place on Friday and Saturday.
- The Silver Skate Festival kicks off on Friday at Hawrelak Park.
- Women’s Initiative Edmonton is hosting the 2018 Women’s Symposium on Saturday at the Westin Edmonton.
- The Great Canadian Fitness Festival is taking place at the Shaw Conference Centre on Saturday and Sunday.
- The Oil Kings host the Rebels for an afternoon game on Saturday at Rogers Place.
- For more great upcoming events, check out Taproot’s guide to winter festivals & events in and around Edmonton!
Sharon and I are totally in love with our new baby girl (and probably a bit sleep-deprived, if I’m being honest)! Emily Fengcai Male was born on Friday, January 26 weighing 7 lbs 14 oz. I can’t believe she’s already more than a week old! Is it too early to start teaching her how to blog? 😉