Getting Good at UP IN and OUT!

There’s a lot of change happening in the ways we build our city. Edmonton’s infill strategy is evolving and the way we break ground is changing as our population begins to grow. Recently, a lot of major decisions have taken place, and I’d like to take a minute to address some of the changes coming Edmonton’s way.

UP- The View in Grandin

Council keyed into new developments in the core, voting in favour of the new Grandin Tower at the last Public Hearing. While this can be seen as a disruptive choice, it’s important that we push the envelope and take responsible risks to drive investment and new units into the core. We must use the land we already have, and this site, within 200 metres of an LRT station is land that doesn’t fall from the sky. It was tough decision for council and the debate was fierce.

OUT- Decoteau North 

At the same meeting, Council approved the Decoteau North Neighbourhood Structure Plan, an innovative new neighbourhood in the suburbs that raises the bar and uses natural assets like wetlands to assist with city services. The neighbourhood is not only designed to use the natural environment but also respond to growth through higher densities, making more affordable housing options available for 10,000 Edmontonians. Decoteau North is a massive undertaking. With new walking trails, energy innovation that uses the natural environment, and space for thousands, this is a monumental change to our city that will have lasting effects for us all.

IN - Semi Detached homes in mature communities 

At Council on September 17th, Council voted to amend the zoning regulations for the (RF1) Single Detached Residential Zone and (RF2) Low Density Infill Zone to expand opportunities for semi-detached and duplex housing by allowing them on lots of the appropriate size. This choice will allow more development in older neighbourhoods, while keeping disruptions and negative impacts to a minimum.

Collaboration and densification can be difficult, but that’s what we as a council are asking of Edmontonians. New development can feel intrusive and jarring for communities, but collaboration is critical to building a great city. We all need to bend, to be pushed out of our comfort zones, as Edmonton marches towards the 2 million mark.

It’s important that we open our minds as Edmonton grows, and that the new changes are adapted to as much as possible. In doing this, we are all making way for new neighbourhoods, new homes, and new Edmontonians. Growth is a city-wide effort, and we have to build together.