Edmonton Minute: Courthouse Repairs, Library Incidents, and a Sole Source Contract
Edmonton Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Edmonton politics
This Week In Edmonton:
- City Hall returns to a more full schedule this week with several meetings on the agenda. The Community and Public Services Committee meets today at 9:30 am to discuss Community Initiated Proposals for Off Leash Dog Parks, the funding agreement for Coronation Park Sports and Recreation Centre, and the Encampment and Unsheltered Homelessness Response Funding Impact report.
On Tuesday, there will be an Agenda Review Committee meeting at 8:30 am, followed by a meeting of the Urban Planning Committee at 9:30 am. The agenda for the latter meeting includes a Growth Management Framework Update and a review of Area Redevelopment Plans. The Committee will also consider an Environmental Review of City-Led Projects. Administration is recommending that there be two to three full-time positions added to the civic roster with “environment and climate expertise” in order to add environment and climate information within Council reports.
- The Executive Committee will meet on Wednesday at 9:30 am to discuss increased community access to Edmonton Soccer Association facilities and the sale of three City-owned parcels of land in the Rampart Industrial neighbourhood. Administration is also seeking approval for a non-competitive single-source agreement for Ledcor to construct the 103A Avenue Pedway. The $26.5 million publicly funded pedway will be built from Churchill LRT station to Station Lands. Opening this up to competition would probably result in savings for the taxpayer.
Last Week In Edmonton:
- Edmonton Public Library (EPL) reported a significant increase in the number of customer distress incidents according to a recent report on security trends and costs. There were 2,770 security incidents at library branches from the beginning of 2022 until November 27th. The number of incidents, which include opioid poisonings and mental distress, increased 69% from 2019 to the end of November 2022. The report also shows that EPL incurred an estimated $1.4 million in costs related to social disorder, incident management and security. The number of security incidents this year is the highest it has been during the library's history of tracking them.
- The City provided an update on their snow-clearing plans, acknowledging that residential road conditions have deteriorated due to milder weather conditions. Crews are focusing on windrows and snow build-up on main roads, and are waiting for the temperature to drop slightly before proceeding with grooming on residential roadways and alleyways. The City is currently clearing windrows from arterial and collector roads, including main roads within Business Improvement Areas and at bus routes, when excessive snow volumes make it necessary.
- Repair work got underway at the Edmonton Law Courts after a power outage caused scheduled matters to be heard either remotely or at other locations. The cause of the outage is not yet known, but it has renewed ongoing calls for an entirely new courthouse building. A business case is now being created for various options, including renovating or expanding the current building, building a new facility, or a combination of both.
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