Headlines: March 26, 2024

· The Pulse
  • Civic Service Union 52 members who work for the City of Edmonton have accepted a new four-year contract, ending prolonged negotiations. Union members had been expected to strike earlier in March, but a last-minute deal with the city averted the action, which would have impacted city services and forced the closure of some municipal facilities. The agreement, which includes wage increases and a retroactive lump-sum payment, passed with 83.5% of participating members voting in favour. Edmonton Public Library employees represented by the union received the same deal. The results of their ratification vote are expected this week.
  • A City of Edmonton report obtained by CBC found that the construction of the Castledowns Pointe condo building did not follow design drawings, confirming engineers' findings from last year. The building's residents were forced to evacuate in September due to structural issues discovered after a fire. The city's report, stemming from an inquiry into the design and construction phases of the 83-unit building, highlighted a failure to comply with building codes. It makes several recommendations to improve public safety, including better communication of roles under the Safety Codes Act and the development of investigation training for safety codes officers.
  • Edmonton city hall officially reopened to the public on March 25, two months after a shooting attack prompted its closure and new security protocols. Visitors must now undergo security screening before entering the City Room, stairwells are locked except for emergencies, and elevators require a City of Edmonton pass. Visitors can freely enter the Hallway Café, City Hall School, and south corridor, but the building's parkade remains closed. Bezhani Sarvar, 28, faces several charges in connection with the January attack.
  • Two Edmonton bridges are being renamed in honour of Edmonton Police Service Constables Travis Jordan and Brett Ryan, who were killed in the line of duty last March. Memorial signs with the names of each officer will be posted at the end of each bridge, which are located over the North Saskatchewan River between Terwillegar Drive and Maskekosihk Trail.
  • The City of Edmonton is expected to be finalizing the severance for outgoing city manager Andre Corbould, Global News reported, citing political analyst John Brennan. While the city would not confirm whether Corbould was hired for a set term, Brennan suggested it would have been about five years. Corbould, whose departure comes a little more than three years into his tenure, was hired in January 2021 at an annual salary of $350,267.94. Brennan said it could take about six months for the city to complete its search for a new city manager. Corbould's last day in the role will be April 3. He is the seventh high-ranking manager to leave the city in less than a year.
  • Sherwood Park Goodwill is auctioning off a donated guitar signed by members of Guns N' Roses. The organization received two donated guitars, and staff recognized the autographs on one as belonging to the legendary rock group. The other is suspected to be autographed by Van Halen, but it hasn't yet been authenticated. Goodwill said it will hold a silent auction for the Guns N' Roses guitar at its Sherwood Park location because so many interested buyers have already reached out with offers. The auction runs until April 1.
  • The Edmonton Elks will celebrate the team's 75th season with several festivities and a special logo featuring Edmonton's skyline and Commonwealth Stadium, where the team has played since 1978. Events include an alumni dinner at the Edmonton Convention Centre, a public autograph session, and expanded pre-game activities at Elks Fan Park, all leading up to the team's home opener against the Saskatchewan Roughriders on June 8.