Headlines: Feb. 6, 2024

· The Pulse
  • The City of Edmonton said it will install new pedestrian-activated traffic lights at a crosswalk on Jasper Avenue and 122 Street, where a 25-year-old man was hit and seriously injured on Feb. 2. Residents in the area have had safety concerns about the crossing because of busy traffic and low visibility. The city responded in 2022 with curb extensions and flexible posts. The new lights, which will feature "Walk" and "Wait" signals, will be installed this spring, a city spokesperson said.
  • The 2022-23 feedback survey from Edmonton Public Schools found that while most students feel supported academically, there is a shortfall in promoting inclusion and a sense of belonging. According to the results, 52.1% of students said they saw their identities reflected in course materials, 52.9% said teachers understand individual learning styles, and 56.7% reported support for transitioning to life after high school. More than 61,000 students participated in the survey, which will be discussed at the Feb. 6 school board meeting.
  • The most recent episode of the CANADALAND podcast features a discussion with award-winning Indigenous journalist Brandi Morin and APTN reporter Kathleen Martens about tent cities and the recent efforts by the City of Edmonton and the Edmonton Police Service to dismantle encampments around the city. Morin was arrested and charged in January while filming police removing an encampment in central Edmonton. Her arrest prompted calls from press freedom organizations for police to immediately drop the charge against her.
  • The board of the Edmonton Arts Council (EAC) announced Sanjay Shahani will leave his role as executive director in March to take on a new position with the Canada Council for the Arts. Shahani joined the EAC in 2016 and oversaw the development of the City of Edmonton's cultural plan, Connections and Exchanges. Recruitment plans for a new executive director haven't been announced yet. Shahani's last day in the role will be March 22.
  • The Edmonton Oilers are coming off their nine-day NHL all-star break to resume their bid to tie a league record for 17 consecutive wins when they face off against the Vegas Golden Knights on Feb. 6. Before the break started, the Oilers had gained momentum with a 16-game winning streak, though they remained in third place in the Pacific Division after a weak start to the season. "Usually when you're on a winning streak, you don't want it to break up," said head coach Kris Knoblauch. "But I think it was good for our guys to recharge."
  • The Alberta government's moratorium on new wind and solar power projects, in effect since August, will conclude as scheduled on Feb. 29. Speaking in Ottawa, Premier Danielle Smith said the province remains committed to being a leader in renewable energy investment while ensuring electricity reliability and affordability, pointing to recent severe cold in Alberta that put significant pressure on the power grid. A report from the Alberta Utility Commission on land use and reclamation, which influenced the pause, is due at the end of February and will inform future development of renewable power, the province said.
  • Former justice minister and Calgary MLA Kathleen Ganley became the first candidate to officially enter the Alberta NDP leadership race. Ganley said her campaign will focus on economic strategy and providing competent leadership. University of Calgary professor Lisa Young said Ganley is positioning herself as the Calgary candidate, noting that expanding support in that city will be important during the next provincial election. Other potential candidates in the race include Edmonton MLAs Sarah Hoffman, Rakhi Pancholi, David Shepherd, and Jodi Calahoo Stonehouse, and former Calgary mayor Naheed Nenshi. The vote to choose a successor to replace party leader Rachel Notley will happen June 22. Members must purchase or renew a membership by April 22 to vote.