- The city and federal government announced a $66.7-million joint investment to repair 1,955 affordable housing units in Edmonton, including 882 managed by Civida and 1,073 owned by HomeEd. Ottawa is funding up to $19.5 million through the National Housing Co-Investment Fund, while the city is contributing $14 million of existing funding to the projects. The remaining $33.2 million will be provided by the housing unit operators. More than 90% of the housing units managed by Civida are in fair to poor condition and in need of major renovations. The repairs are expected to be completed by February 2026.
- The Edmonton Police Service released its 2022 year-end data showing the violent crime rate in the city increased by 16.5% last year, from 12,909 cases in 2021 to 15,040 in 2022. It was the "highest number of violent criminal incidents ever reported in a single year," said Sean Tout, executive director of EPS information management and intelligence. The data shows some crimes, such as sexual assault and kidnapping, have decreased, but others, including robbery and level one assault, have increased by more than 20%. The data also includes information on offenders' involvement with police after being released, which comes as the Canadian Association of Police Chiefs advocates for reform to the country's bail system. EPS says better information sharing between police services and the justice system is needed to address crime increases. Mount Royal University criminologist Kelly Sundberg recommended a data-driven, coordinated approach between cities, provinces and the federal government. "We need to stop these single-project approaches because they're just not working," Sundberg said.
- Stony Plain Road will be closed between 131 Street and 139 Street for about four months beginning April 24 to accommodate construction for the Valley Line West LRT. Traffic and pedestrians are encouraged to detour on 102 Avenue or 107 Avenue. Work to reconfigure Stony Plain Road to have one lane of traffic in each direction, with LRT tracks in the centre, is expected to be completed in November 2023. The city and Marigold Infrastructure Partners, which is building the LRT project, will post signs in the area to help reroute travellers.
- Edmonton and St. Albert are collaborating on a land-planning project called the Intermunicipal Planning Framework. The study is focusing on an area along the borders of the two cities with the aim of identifying how development can benefit both communities by reducing costs and duplication, increasing economic development, and improving municipal services and infrastructure. The cities received $200,000 in joint funding from the Alberta Community Partnership program for the study, which is expected to continue through 2024.
- Four African penguins, named Hope, Lillooet, Steveston, and Saltspring, will be leaving the Vancouver Aquarium next month to live with a larger colony of 17 African penguins in Edmonton. The move, which is part of a larger conservation program by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums, is intended to address population declines of the endangered species. "It's very important for them to live in a bigger colony," said trainer Madison Jean. The aquarium did not say which Edmonton facility the penguins would be calling home.
- All municipal golf courses are now open for the 2023 season. The city operates three courses across the city: Rundle and Riverside, which are both 18-hole courses, and Victoria, which is Canada's oldest municipal course. The city said it is working with the Indigenous Sport Council of Alberta, the Paralympic Sports Association, and Newcomers to Canada to make golf accessible to more Edmontonians.
Headlines: April 24, 2023
By Mariam Ibrahim