The Pulse: Oct. 22, 2021

Here's what you need to know about Edmonton today.

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Essentials

  • 10°C: Increasing cloudiness in the morning. Wind southeast 30 km/h gusting to 50. High 10. (forecast)
  • 5.0: A 5.0-magnitude earthquake, the second-largest in Alberta history, shook the west-central part of the province on Oct. 20, with reports it could be felt in Edmonton. (details)
  • 770: Alberta reported 770 new cases of COVID-19 and 8 new deaths on Oct. 21. (details)
  • 5-1: The Oilers (4-0-0) defeated the Coyotes (0-3-1) on Oct. 21. They play again tonight at 8pm, against the Golden Knights. (details)

Taproot surveyed municipal election candidates

New city council members support downtown vibrancy strategy


By Paul Cashman Paul Cashman

Edmonton's new city council members are on record supporting the downtown vibrancy strategy, increasing resources for homegrown economic diversification initiatives, and maintaining current spending levels on pandemic aid for businesses.

In responses to Taproot's pre-election survey of key municipal issues, mayor-elect Amarjeet Sohi and 11 of the 12 successful councillor candidates provided insights into where the new leadership at City Hall stands on business-related concerns. Karen Principe did not answer the Taproot survey.

Sohi and councillors Aaron Paquette, Anne Stevenson, Michael Janz, and Tim Cartmell supported the downtown strategy and favoured fully funding the plan. Another five council members — Keren Tang, Ashley Salvador, Andrew Knack, Sarah Hamilton, and Jo-Anne Wright – also backed the plan at the current level of investment. New councillors Erin Rutherford and Jennifer Rice supported investment in downtown, but not the plan approved by council in June.

Only two winning candidates – Cartmell and Hamilton – said the city's current approach to encouraging economic diversification is heading in the right direction. Nine council members said the city should put more resources behind nurturing homegrown businesses.

There seems little support for increased city spending to help local businesses recover from the pandemic, an option chosen by only Paquette and Stevenson.

Edmonton companies should also not expect the new council to ease their tax burden by shifting more of the load onto the residential sector. Only Cartmell and Hamilton want residential property owners to pay higher taxes while nine other council members who answered the question supported the current split between residential and business taxes.

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By Mack Male Mack Male

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Podcast art for Hidden Track.

Podcast pick: Hidden Track


By Andy Trussler Andy Trussler

Mamma Mia! Everyone's favourite Swedish disco band is back, and so is CKUA's music podcast Hidden Track. To commemorate the November launch of Voyage, ABBA's first studio album in 40 years, the podcast dedicated its first episode of Season 3 to "the much-misunderstood story of an iconic band that re-wrote the rules of pop music." The new episode also features Carl Magnus Palm — a historian, esteemed ABBA researcher, and author of Bright Lights, Dark Shadows: The Real Story of ABBA — to guide us through ABBA's star-studded and complicated history.

Hidden Track brings listeners the stories behind the music. Previous seasons have unpacked the works of k.d. lang, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Beethoven, Feist, The Pixies, and many more internationally beloved artists. For the newest season, host Grant Stovel promises to "connect with more musicians, journalists, and producers to deliver great untold music stories."

CKUA is currently hosting its fall fundraiser, where you can directly support Hidden Tracks and other projects by the station. You can find Hidden Tracks on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, or Spotify.

You can listen to podcast picks from Taproot on Listen Notes or Spotify.

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Mayor-elect Amarjeet Sohi was presented with a Launch Party 12 swag bag this week

The world needs what Edmonton offers

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A message from Innovate Edmonton:

"Edmonton is primed for early-stage growth and global positioning as an innovation capital. With an educated population, high quality of life and low cost of living, Edmonton is a magnet for young talent and startups. Our local ecosystem is anchored by our post-secondary institutions and recognized strengths in artificial intelligence, big data, analytics, and life sciences. Edmonton is also home to twenty startup support organizations and incubators, including Startup Edmonton, Scaleup Edmonton and Accelerate Edmonton, all of which operate under the Innovate Edmonton umbrella."

"The world needs what Edmonton offers," said Innovate Edmonton CEO Catherine Warren. "A passionate and vibrant community of entrepreneurs committed to sustainability, diversity and inclusion, aimed at tackling some of the world's biggest challenges. By harnessing the power of the public and private sectors, ground-breaking academic research, and purpose-driven investment, together we are positioning Edmonton as a global innovation capital."

Learn more about Innovate Edmonton, which leverages, unites, and promotes home-grown innovation as a gateway to solving the world's most pressing problems.

Photo: Mayor-elect Amarjeet Sohi was presented with a Launch Party 12 swag bag this week. (Startup Edmonton)

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