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YES! For Edmonton

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  • YES! For Edmonton

    Stand up for Edmonton’s progress on Oct. 18 and beyond

    “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”

    Those are powerful words spoken long ago by Mahatma Gandhi. But what is the change that you wish to see?

    Edmonton is changing for the better thanks to the hard work of progressive leaders who have a vision for this city’s future. Yes! For Edmonton is a group that wants to advance that vision and keep changing the way Edmontonians see themselves and the way the world sees our city. We aspire to make Edmonton more sustainable, more diverse, with more opportunities for the future. Who is Yes! for Edmonton? We are an informal coalition of like-minded Edmontonians, people who believe this city can be great and should be given the chance.

    We believe in sustainable growth for Edmonton. This includes keeping a focus on the development of downtown and central lands, both small and large parcels. Improving densities and streetscapes in our downtown can have tremendous benefits through the attraction of business and the creation of a vibrant urban culture that can appeal to the next generation of Edmontonians and visitors alike. Encouraging greater densities can also benefit all taxpayers who don’t have to pay for new roads, sewers, parks and schools.

    This includes supporting the redevelopment of the City Centre Airport lands. Edmonton has a unique opportunity in North America to use this land to return value to all citizens. We have 216 hectares of land, within six minutes of our downtown core that we can develop and use in ways that will shape our city for generations. As citizens, we can decide how innovative and creative that development will be. These decisions will enable us to extend our LRT to the northwest and give NAIT the room it needs to grow.

    We can incorporate green development, walk-able, connected communities and affordable housing options – the kind of city our children will want to live in and stay in. Sustainable communities are ones that include families and all ages, our grandparents deserve this opportunity as much as our children do. Seniors’ housing should be included in this development. We can tie this new development to our hopes for a vibrant downtown and to keeping schools open in the city core, because people will come back and live there.

    Yes! for Edmonton believes a sustainable city is also one with comprehensive public transit including LRT to all corners of the city. For too long Edmonton has held back, debated and questioned the value of this project. Now with the south leg fully complete, the city has seen the benefits with passenger volumes already higher than anyone expected.

    Expanding the line farther north out of the downtown and to the west and southeast of the city must be a priority. LRT helps remove vehicles from our roadways, easing traffic and wear-and-tear on roads. It promotes the growth of higher-density housing and commercial clusters around lines and provides an affordable method of transportation for all Edmontonians. Building west can help revitalize areas and link our downtown to important hubs such as West Edmonton Mall. Building north can help link all of our important post-secondary institutions as well as the redeveloped airport lands and also lay the groundwork to eventually connect our larger region. Sustainable transportation is a hallmark of all major cities and Edmonton deserves no less.

    A sustainable community is also one that includes neighbourhood schools. Edmonton’s population will continue to grow and this will increase pressures to build more neighbourhoods. By encouraging the revitalization of older neighbourhoods we believe Edmonton can protect and save many of its neighbourhood schools which are in danger of closing from low attendance. In turn, those schools will help attract new families to the core.

    We believe Edmonton is world class and we want to show Canada and the world our energy and passion by supporting the City’s bid for the World Expo 2017. That year will also mark Canada’s 150 birthday and Edmonton has the potential to be home to the biggest celebration. A successful Expo bid will bring investment, tourism, jobs, new infrastructure and a legacy for Edmonton that hasn’t been seen since the 1978 Commonwealth Games.

    Change only happens when people show up and support it. We can plan and develop something wonderful together or we can keep arguing and litigating decisions of the past. These ideas are about more than just one election, they’re a vision to aspire to for many years to come.

    Our city has made significant progress in recent years. We have made tough but progressive decisions; we have re-invested in neglected infrastructure; our City Council has worked co-operatively on major issues; relationships with our regional partners and with the province are constructive; and we have the prospect of hosting a world Expo here on the 150th birthday of our country. None of these changes or projects will happen overnight. Edmonton must keep one eye on the needs of today while realizing our decisions must be ones that can last into the future.

    We are a group of citizens called Yes! for Edmonton. Our bias is clear. We believe it’s time to move on. We believe Edmonton is well positioned to continue the momentum and turn its energies to creative solutions and ideas for the future.

    Be the change you wish to see. We urge you to get out and vote on Monday, Oct. 18. Vote for a progressive vision for Edmonton and stay engaged – the real work of progress begins after the election. This city needs you.

    To learn more about our group visit www.yesforedmonton.com.
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