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Candidate Stephen Mandel

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  • Candidate Stephen Mandel

    This thread is to ask questions of Candidate Stephen Mandel – Mayor.

    All members are asked to allow the Candidate to post first in his or her thread. This is to allow the Candidate ample opportunity to introduce their background, platform, and any other information they may feel is pertinent to this discussion.

    All decorum expected of members in the C2E Ask Forums will be expected here. An addendum is that posters may ask as many questions as they wish, but they are also politely asked to follow any instructions on posting or reply timelines that the Candidate expresses.

    Thank you to all for participating in the 2010 Connect2Edmonton Election Forum!

    I said this because coming here makes my heart hurt.

  • #2
    Welcome and commitment

    Hi everyone and thanks for coming back to for the 2010 civic election forum. This is the second election I've visited with users of this site, and have also enjoyed this forum during my time as Mayor as well. As always, I want to have this be as open a forum as possible and want people to know I will be as interactive and responsive as possible on my end - with some limitations given the schedule of the campaign.

    To that end, what I've done in the past is work with my team to collect questions over a day or two and then post a full list of replies from myself all in one collected response post - roughly every two or three days. I will do my best to be as complete as possible with all answers but have no problem with follow-ups or clarification requests.

    In addition to handling questions from site users, I also may, from time to time, post a question or interesting idea that came through my Web site or another channel (without naming the sender for privacy sake). I may also use this site to post campaign announcements and seek feedback on the ideas that are being generated through this campaign or that are announced as part of my platform.

    With that I am looking forward to having the chance to connect with as many Edmontonians as possible here. I also want to say a special thanks to the administrators for making this forum accessible and open to all candidates, and of course for your interest and passion in Edmonton.

    Stephen Mandel


    • #3
      Mr. Mandel,

      Thank you for taking the time to participate on this community. I only have a few short (but hopefully challenging) questions, since I generally already know where you stand on most of the big issues that concern me.

      1. The question of park-and-rides came up on your Facebook page; I'm curious what your thoughts are on park-and-rides, and how you feel they fit into the city's plan to use LRT as a tool to help spur more and higher density neighborhood development around transit.

      2. In addition to the "big" things that can and should be done to improve our collective sustainability as a city, what ideas do you have for smaller things that individual citizens can do to reduce our overall carbon footprint, and what can the city do to promote and encourage those things?

      3. What are your thoughts on cycling in this city, our existing cycling infrastructure, and the new plans for improved cycling infrastructure? Do you feel it is enough, a good compromise, or not quite there yet? In any case, what would you do differently?

      4. Homelessness (it had to come up eventually); do you feel the city is doing enough? Do you have any ideas on how to tackle this difficult problem that haven't been put in place yet?

      5. Similarly, it seems as though the city is intent on consolidating many homeless shelters, affordable housing, transitional housing, and other support services in a small area in the Boyle St. and McCauley neighborhoods. Given the highly publicized problems of Vancouver's downtown east side, do you think this is a good idea? Or is it something you think should be done differently? Do you think this consolidation will positively or negatively impact the development of The Quarters?

      6. What are your thoughts on intensification within the city? Do you think we're on the right track with the approach so far? Do you have ideas on what more the city can and should be doing to encourage more infill and density?

      Thanks for your time.
      Last edited by RTA; 21-09-2010, 08:57 PM. Reason: Added question 6
      Strathcona City Separatist


      • #4
        Thank you Mayor Mandel for taking time out to answer our questions.

        One thing I have thought about is the EE plebiscite. As we all know now the plebiscite was delivered to City Hall about a year too late. In hindsight, do you think it would have been prudent to inform EE at the start of their campaign that City Hall could not except the petition due to the fact that it was not within the correct time frame of the MGA act.

        Thank you, and I wish you well in your run for a 3rd term.
        Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.


        • #5
          How can you stand behind your most recent municipal development plan, which still permits for 70% of new growth to be built on greenfield sites outside the urban fabric of Edmonton?


          • #6
            Thank you for your participation in this forum, Your Worship.

            1. I get the impression that you wish to serve as Mayor of Edmonton for one more term longer than your initial 2 terms because you want to see some initiatives through fruition. What would be the Top Five things you want to accomplish for your next term, if you win?

            2. In the long-term, where do you see general aviation taking place after ECCA is closed? EIA? Villeneuve? Other?

            3. What are the main outstanding issues that the regional governance still needs to deal with?

            4. Many are still awaiting some movement on the Quarters redevelopment plan. Economic issues aside, what needs to happen for this to move ahead?

            5. If in the event that you are not re-elected as Mayor, will you still pursue your long-term vision of Edmonton via other means, such as involvement in the Expo bid and the downtown arena/entertainment district initiative?
            “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012


            • #7
              How do you plan on working with the school boards (particularly EPSB) to increase demand for schools in mature neighbourhoods? It seems like the city has the power to control demand for schools (through developments, incentives, tax breaks, etc) while the school board has the power to control supply (through construction/closures). At the moment, the city is trying to increase demand, while the school board is decreasing supply.


              • #8
                Thank you, Mr. Mandel, for participating in these forums.

                My question is about public transit.

                I visit Vancouver fairly frequently, and am constantly impressed with its transit system; even during my first visit I found it easy to get around, with service to a large part of the greater Vancouver area and a new SkyTrain line directly to Vancouver International Airport.

                Do you feel Edmonton should aspire towards such a transit system? If so, what steps do you feel need to be taken to make this a reality, and when do you feel such a system would be complete?
       — My story podcast. Take a listen!


                • #9
                  Your Worship, I have several questions.

                  1. Sprawl. Do you agree it is becoming or will become unsustainable? If so, how do you propose controlling it?

                  2. Transit. (a) LRT. Can you see any alternative funding models for LRT construction beside federal and provincial grants? How do you feel about formal bond issues, public-private partnerships, and fund-raising through dedicated user fees such as road tolls or property-tax surcharges, perhaps on a per-neighbourhood opt-in basis similar to what has been used for back alley pavement? (b) Bus service. Are you in favour of an integrated regional transit board, and if so under what conditions?

                  3. Urban preservation. (a) What priority do you place on maintaining services, including schooling and public recreation, within the city core? Schools being the responsibility of the EPSB, are you willing to use any moral or financial leverage the city may have to keep inner-city schools open? And if maintenance of recreational services in the core is an issue, how do you react to alternative funding models such as user fees or partial privatization? (b) What are your thoughts on the glut of empty space downtown and around it? Are you in favour of concrete steps such as adjustment of tax regime to minimize it and to encourage specifically residential use?

                  4. Policing. How well do you feel the EPS have responded to the past controversies regarding police openness and transparency? Do you feel there is still room for improvement? How do you see the role of mayor as a member of council and as a member of the police commission?

                  5. General role as mayor. Obviously the mayor is but one voice on council. What do feel is the primary role of the city's nominal chief executive -- is it to promote the city for external investment and involvement, or is it leading the effort to improve its features within its borders?

                  6. Assuming every mayor's vision is to leave the city a better place than it was when first elected mayor, how would you describe the vision of a better Edmonton that would leave you satisfied in the end?


                  PS I apologize for so many questions, and thank you for the time taken to consider them.


                  • #10
                    Mayor Mandel,

                    My question is, are you going to do something that has too many parking lots in the downtown core ?

                    hope you win your successful 3 rd term.

                    thank you for your time.
                    Edmonton Rocks Rocks Rocks


                    • #11
                      Dear Mayor Mandel,

                      I have a quick question regarding LRT construction/planning. While I definitely agree with City planners that we can't afford to put the entire thing underground, I also believe there are certain intersections or parts in the core where the LRT should be placed underground (safety, convenience, etc) so we can avoid repeating what the City of Calgary is now contemplating years later... putting their existing and future downtown lines underground.

                      One example I can think of would be the University Avenue/114 Street crossing. This is obviously a crossing that should have gone under the road rather than over. What do you think? Are we going to find ourselves wishing we had done this right the first time in the future by putting parts of our LRT expansions underground? I realize Edmonton's core can handle at grade crossings now, but what about in 10, 20, or 30 years? I could see this being an incredibly expensive mistake. Please share your thoughts.

                      Thanks you,



                      • #12
                        What is the target for number of people living in edmonton's downtown core

                        What city is Edmonton's template for moving forward with sustainable practices

                        Are electric street cars a plausible option for major mixed use areas such as whyte ave and jasper ave
                        Stop the Sprawl


                        • #13
                          Dear Mr. Mandel,

                          While it's great to see the plans for city-wide LRT, I think there is a need for transportation improvements like the Walterdale Bridge and Yellowhead Trail. What are the city's transportation goals for 2010-13?
                          "Talk minus action equals zero." - Joe Keithley, D. O. A.


                          • #14
                            Mayor Mandel,
                            We seem to constantly be hit with increases in our utility bills. It seems far to frequently we are paying extra for sewer/lights/roads/garbage etc: Whatever the reason for increasing our bills most of us can see it is just another form of taxation.
                            We now pay a fee if we buy T.V's./Computer/Tires etc: These fees ares supposed to be for disposal of these goods. Why do we pay t at the store then pay on our bills and taxes.
                            Gone............................and very quickly forgotten may I add.


                            • #15
                              Mr. Mayor,

                              1) Of these options, what do you think is the largest hurdle we must overcome to have the W/SE LRT line done by 2016?
                              a) Funding
                              b) Public Support (particularly those most affected along the route)
                              c) A change in attitude from our city's "car culture"

                              2) I have been frustrated (understatement) by the lack of communication between ETS and the everyday user when it comes to suggestions, delays, and security. I met with ETS security half a year ago in regards to a silent-alert security system that works via text messaging. They agreed it was a good idea, but I have not heard back from them or observed any signs of progress. Also, there are often many delays on the LRT lately due to upgrades, and ETS often leaves train riders in the dark-we can be stopped for up to 5 minutes with no explanation or alert over the PA.
                              Would you be open to creating transit workshops where ETS officials can meet with the public to discuss concerns and poise recommendations with mandatory follow-ups?

                              I'll leave it at that. You already have my vote.

                              Josh Stock.
                              $2.00 $2.25 $2.50 $2.75 $2.85 $3.00 $3.20 $3.25