The Pulse: April 16, 2021

Happy Friday! Enjoy the warm weather safely. Here's what you need to know today in Edmonton.

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  • 19°C: Sunny. High 19. (forecast)
  • Teal: The High Level Bridge will be lit in teal for Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder Awareness Month. (details)
  • 4,201: There are 4,201 active cases of COVID-19 in the Edmonton zone as of April 15 at 5pm. (details)

'It's a human right': Edmontonians want city council to take more action on housing

'It's a human right': Edmontonians want city council to take more action on housing

By Jackson Spring

The next city council should do more to support Edmonton's vulnerable populations by funding and advocating for additional supportive housing, residents said at Taproot’s sixth listening session.

More than 20 Edmontonians weighed in on housing and homelessness at Taproot's most recent listening session on April 14. The event was prompted by Taproot’s People's Agenda, a document that’s being compiled based on the responses to this question: What key issue do you want the candidates to talk about as they compete for votes in the 2021 municipal election, and why?

The current council's efforts to end homelessness, like its $8.1 million commitment to temporary shelters, and advocating to the federal and provincial governments for supportive housing, were noted in the discussion. However, the majority of attendees agreed that the municipal government should expand on those efforts — by providing more of its own money, educating citizens on the issue, and addressing housing affordability in the city as a whole.

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By Emily Rendell-Watson and Mack Male

  • Education leaders in the city are wondering whether its time to move learning back online, as COVID-19 cases surge. According to CBC, 1,900 people connected with Edmonton public and Catholic schools are in quarantine.
  • Edmonton's on-demand transit service will be the largest in Canada when it launches on April 25 alongside the bus network redesign. Residents in 37 neighbourhoods without transit service will be able to book an on-demand trip.
  • Edmontonians may be able to drink alcohol in some parks this summer, pending council approval of a proposed pilot program. According to the Journal, 71% of respondents were in support of the program when asked through a survey earlier this year.
  • Construction will soon begin on a new dog park in downtown Edmonton, east of the 104 Avenue and 102 Street intersection, in the Ice District. The dog park, scheduled to open in July, will be privately owned and maintained but open to the public.
  • Three counties in the Edmonton-area have issued fire restrictions as dry conditions persist. There are more than 30 fire restrictions or bans in place across Alberta on top of dozens of advisories, according to
  • REACH Edmonton will receive $500,000 over four years from the federal government to "develop a coordinated community response to victims of human trafficking in Red Deer, Edmonton, and surrounding communities."
  • The Alberta Teacher's Association is calling on the province to stop work on the new draft K-6 curriculum, "pending an independent review and full re-write."
Spin scooters arrive in Edmonton, 104th Street opens up for two weekends

Spin scooters arrive in Edmonton, 104th Street opens up for two weekends

By Trent Wilkie in the Business Roundup

San Francisco's Spin released hundreds of orange and black e-scooters into Old Strathcona and downtown Edmonton earlier this week as the company prepared to make its official debut in Canada this weekend.

Spin is offering free rides in celebration of its launch on April 17, and will also offer healthcare workers rides at no charge for a limited time. It joins fellow scooter companies Lime and Bird on the streets. 

Meanwhile, the Downtown Business Association (DBA) is transforming 104th Street between Jasper and 102nd Avenue into a roomy weekend pedestrian patio area. 

Both events are aiming to get people outside as the weather warms up. The DBA is also hoping to offset the closure of indoor dining, which was shut down as part of Alberta’s return to Step 1 of its reopening plan earlier this month. Businesses in the area will be serving meals outside for two weekends coinciding with Downtown Dining Week, which runs until April 25.

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Cover art for La place, a stylized map with a pin

Podcast pick: La place

By Karen Unland

Do you love local history? Can you understand spoken French? Then La place is the place to be.

This podcast, a production of the Société historique francophone de l'Alberta, explores the history of various places through an engaging and well-researched conversation among Josée Thibeault, Ronald Tremblay, and Denis Perreaux. Perreaux oversees the project, and it is beautifully produced by Isael Huard.

Season 1, which began in 2018, focused on various Edmonton neighbourhoods. Season 2 headed to southern Alberta, and Season 3 has come back to the Edmonton area, with deep and delightful dives into the pasts of such places as St. Albert, Beaumont, Morinville, and Lamoureux.

La place recently joined the Alberta Podcast Network, and it is the first podcast on the network in a language other than English. Vous pouvez même entendre des annonces pour Taproot en français lors de quelques épisodes!

More information
A St. Albert Transit bus

Quiz time: Transit


Test your knowledge with this daily quiz, brought to you by the People's Agenda project:

What area's transportation department is Paul Jankowski leaving to become the first CEO of Edmonton Metropolitan Transit Services Commission?

  1. Calgary
  2. Central Fraser Valley
  3. Durham Region
  4. Regional Municipality of York
  5. St. Albert

See Monday's issue of The Pulse for the answer.

The answer to the April 15 quiz was e — the Edmonton protocol is a treatment for Type 1 diabetes developed at the University of Alberta, where progress continues towards a cure.

The next People's Agenda listening session will be on the topic of climate change. Join us online at noon on April 22.

Photo by Ryanmirjanic

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