Did you know the city loses money with every house that is built in the outskirts? Each new development means the city needs to provide new services. With the little land we have left within city boundaries, it’s a model we can’t afford to continue. We don’t have to evict sheep when communities in Ellerslie are built, nor depend solely on coal power. The land we have can be sustainable protected urban farmland or used for renewable energy harvesting. Imagine Edmonton grown produce or an energy farm to sell power to neighbouring communities.
Anthony Henday was known to grow crops as he travelled. On the way back from exploring or trading, there would be food on the way home. We can continue his innovation by harvesting the frontier for the future. The current land along the Henday corridor could be used as urban farmland for various low noise agricultural uses, including large scale community gardens. Some of the Henday overpasses are longer than river crossings, and this would add to the beauty, productivity, and profitability of our concrete ‘rivers’.
Northeast Edmonton currently has plans and has already developed parts of the energy park. After learning more about this during the World Heavy Oil Congress in the city last year, the energy park is really for research and development for traditional sources of energy in Alberta. The only large remaining urban reserve not set aside for suburban growth is the Rural Southeast in Ward 12. This was my backyard growing up, and I am proud to live by this undeveloped part of the city. This area could be used for mixed uses, both for protected urban farmland, and for renewable and safe energy harvesting. Edmonton is one of the sunniest places in the province, with 2299 hours of sunlight per year. Solar electric or solar thermal cultivation is a real possibility. With the world energy landscape changing, and for the reduction of toxic coal power emissions, this would serve the local economy and be an ecological haven. Energy from this section of the city could be sold to nearby communities.
Keep our quality of life great while moving innovations and developments forward in a sustainable way.
Keep. Moving. Forward.
Vote Ho for city council on February 22.