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  • Great(er) Edmonton

    Don't mind the subject, I couldn't think of a better title. We all call Edmonton home. If we travel far away, we dont say we live in Jasper Place, Millwoods, Sherwood Park, or St Albert... we say we are from or near Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. We come to connect 2 "Edmonton", but the region is very unconnected.

    This is a poll, for the masses, to see which option they would prefer here. Given that most agree that that current "working" agreements/arrangements in our Region simply are not working at all, for plenty of reasons..

    Many here have been giving plenty of thought on this issue, and this issue is coming up full steam in the next year (I figure). I've listed a few options/ideas I have for the region. Some of them completely workable, and some a little harder, and some are just wild ideas. Please feel free to comment/share yours. Clearly, something needs to be done... What should be done?

    How would you like to see the Region work in the future?

    1) Edmonton and region remains the same and functions the same. The imbalances are kept... etc

    2) Revenue and Cost Sharing only. Formal boundaries stay the same. Some shared services such as emergency/transit/sewer/etc.

    3) Cost Sharing Only. Other counties help Edmonton on specific projects such as homeless shelters, central libraries, arenas... as they see fit, when they see fit, and under a multitude of conditions.

    4) Edmonton is split up and given to the surrounding counties. Each County forms a new government, and has to form a controlling regional government for the whole region. "Edmonton" is no longer, instead, its 4-5 counties, and a regional government

    5) Edmonton absorbs/amalgamates all urban areas with in the Region that touch its borders or are within 20 km of its borders. Unicity, similar to Calgary

    6) Edmonton and surrounding urban areas and counties that border Edmonton are redrawn. Most of the far out farmland is given to the further out Counties. The urban areas of Edmonton are divided into 5-6 boroughs, a new civic government is formed. One Central borough and 3-5 boroughs for the remaining areas.

    7) Same thing as above, except no Central Borough, and downtown is the dividing point. Each borough has similar responsibilities and costs, as each part as a section of downtown, and, suburban areas, and rural areas, and growth areas.

    8.) Strathcona County or St Albert or etc is given Edmonton, and Edmonton ceases to exist.

    9) Other - please provide details
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    A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

  • #2
    5 + Edmonton has veto power in any rezoning of agriculture land within 30 km's of the bordering county.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by LindseyT
      5 + Edmonton has veto power in any rezoning of agriculture land within 30 km's of the bordering county.
      I would hope that would be the plan in a few more then just the 5th option. I really hope that happens in any end result. That's one of the biggest issues is the push outwards in all directions.
      A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

      Comment


      • #4
        That's quite a few options.
        First off I believe we need to reduce the size of the region to something that makes better sense and is more manageable. The example I give is Parkland County; I seriously doubt that much of that county West of Hwy 43 (if even that far) should actually be considered a part of the region.

        Once we have a better idea of what the region should actually look like then we can worry about dividing up boroughs. I think it should be the City of Edmonton plus at least 4-5 other boroughs; one for each large cluster of urban area. As for Edmonton I think that the city border should be the ring road in the TUC. It's simplistic, easy to determine and quite obvious. There are no invisible lines to argue about once it's complete.

        The unicity concept I don't believe would be even possible with all of the in-fighting we see today. Although it would probably be the optimal result.
        Likewise dividing up the middle of Edmonton doesn't seem right to me either. The name of 'Edmonton' should remain. For better or worse it's how the world identifies us.

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        • #5
          You know where I sit Feepa...you've proofread it...

          I'll have it tweaked soon...and hopefully have the governance model structured properly.
          President and CEO - Airshow.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by RichardS
            You know where I sit Feepa...you've proofread it...

            I'll have it tweaked soon...and hopefully have the governance model structured properly.
            I didn't know I was proofreading it, but I certainly have read it
            A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

            Comment


            • #7
              Proofread, read it to see if I am on track, whichever. Good to see some ideas out there. I think I'll stop in this debate now and see what happens.

              Plus, I'm getting tired of some of the anonymous insulting pm's.
              President and CEO - Airshow.

              Comment


              • #8
                Maybe I'm wrong in this thinking, but I wonder if one of the problems with a seamless regional agreement is the fear that those communities outside of Edmonton will look like they are an extension of Edmonton as opposed to being individual and separate communities.

                Even if no amalgamation is done.

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                • #9
                  You're not wrong Terry.
                  President and CEO - Airshow.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bryguy
                    As for Edmonton I think that the city border should be the ring road in the TUC. It's simplistic, easy to determine and quite obvious. There are no invisible lines to argue about once it's complete.
                    See Washington DC for why that's a bad idea. It'll immediately lead to outside the Henday = "suburban paradise," inside the Henday = "slummy gang wars" despite any truth to the contrary.

                    I'm big on the borough idea; I think there needs to be an Edmonton on the north bank and a Strathcona on the south bank myself.

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                    • #11
                      too small.....given where I've seen the dividing lines proposed...
                      President and CEO - Airshow.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        In concept, most here know I am strongly in favour of amalgamation for the region. In implementing that, I am not sure we are large enough to warrant borough politics as they are often put forward as a model. I am as strongly opposed to ward politics within a single council as I am in favour of amalgamation and fear borough politics with separate councils and budgets would be even worse. My fear is that it would entrench differences between the boroughs rather than bridge them and would forever high-light - if not revel in - their inequalities.

                        Even within the ward system we have now in Edmonton, there are disputes about how the different wards don’t receive their fair share of projects and money. They don't however seem to compare or dwell on taxes paid - or overall revenues taken in - as a like measure. I think you have to have a strong single political body/voice for the region and that can only come from a single autonomous council that has not delegated (abrogated?) it’s responsibility to all of it’s citizens and neighborhoods.

                        “Local” events don’t need local government – look at either the downtown or Strathcona markets, or the silly parade, or the “show and shines” or the Chinese new years celebrations or a host of other “community” events. St. Albert will not "lose" it's farmers' market or it's artists or it's bilingual heritage. What we do have to remember when we have this discussions is that the entire Greater Edmonton Region is NOT a large city in terms of either area or population and does NOT warrant more than one level of local government.

                        One need only look at the regions problems now where St. Albert and Strathcona and Fort Saskatchewan and Edmonton and Leduc and all of the others have their own planning departments and zoning bylaws and permit procedures etc. If I am involved in a dozen projects within the region, I should be able to discuss all of them in one place (not necessarily with the same planner but at least in the same building). These projects are almost universally complementary to each other and not competitive - they do not need competitive jurisdictions in order to be successful.

                        One of the reasons we struggle as a region is that we keep trying too hard to invent options and alternatives that might work on a more equitable basis for the entire region when they are all in fact not much different than what we have now with some modicum of cost and/or revenue sharing or other tinkering or fine tuning. A violin without a bow or a saxophone without a reed will never play the right notes regardless of how much tuning you give them.

                        If the current framework doesn’t work - and we all know that on a fair and equitable basis it does not (all we have to do is look at the region’s and the province’s goals thirty years ago for 75% of the regions growth to take place within the city of Edmonton to know it does not) - we should have learned enough over those same thirty years to know that without a single level of control and accountability, we will never achieve the real potential that the capital region and all of its components should be able to achieve.

                        PS If it's not readily apparent, I cast my ballot for option 5.
                        "If you did not want much, there was plenty." Harper Lee

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I should clarify my position. I agree with Ken that amalgamation makes the most sense, however, for once I appear to be the one playing the realist to his idealist.

                          My main concern with the amalgamation issue is that it will be fought tooth-and-nail by the regional municipalities. If it is imposed from above by the provincial government, awesome. I just don't think they have the cajones to do it.

                          When I say borough, I am not picturing something akin to seperate cities stuck together. What I think needs to happen is that we need to find some way to get a single level of government to control planning, zoning, transportation, etc. That's the main goal. In order to get there, I think we need to make some concessions.

                          If regional governments want to stay semi-independent; okay. They can have their fire departments, school districts, control over rec centres, I don't really care. Whatever doesn't hurt the bigger region (that much). In order to give the regional municipalities power, we need to come up with rational units. Clearly Beaumont doesn't equal Edmonton, and they need to give up on that. St. Albert also doesn't.

                          That's where the boroughs come in. If you take Edmonton and slice it up, then you can assign little pieces like NW to St. Albert, and the far west end (Lewis Estates) to Parkland county. If you take one big Edmonton, and break it up into pieces, suddenly each of the resulting five or whatever boroughs will be relatively equal.

                          Throughout it, though, we need to make sure that it's the top level government that has all the real power. So in that sense, this is all kind of a trick to get the municipalities on board and take their power away. I would rather see a half dozen equal units bickering than thirty tiny towns holding sway over the only major player in the region.

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                          • #14
                            I vote #5

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                            • #15
                              Re: Great(er) Edmonton

                              Originally posted by feepa

                              8.) Strathcona County or St Albert or etc is given Edmonton, and Edmonton seizes to exist.
                              The proper word is "ceases", actually.

                              And I vote for #5.
                              Is there hope for Edmonton? Yes!!! The Oilers? Wait and see.

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