Spurring revitalization in Calgary’s downtown

Premier Notley announces the extension of the Calgary Rivers District Community Revitalization Levy (CRL).

The Alberta government investment in the BMO Centre will create 2,250 jobs and contribute $223 million annually to Alberta’s economy. The expansion will double the size of the BMO Centre, making it the second largest convention centre in Canada and a tier-one trade show facility, similar to venues in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal. 

“East Victoria Park, which includes Stampede Park and BMO Centre, has long stood as the city’s cultural epicentre. With this announcement, we are going to kick-start urban renewal in Calgary’s downtown, create thousands of jobs, and increase tourism, business development and investment in Calgary.”

Rachel Notley, Premier

“This CRL has been one of the most successful in the world, and the new vibrancy of the East Village is testament to that. Extending it for a further 20 years after 2026 will allow us to craft even better neighbourhoods, particularly south of the tracks in East Victoria Park where we are crafting a great cultural and entertainment district for Calgary.”

Naheed Nenshi, mayor, City of Calgary

“The provincial and municipal governments have made a significant commitment towards the future economic diversity of the city. The BMO Centre will be a major catalyst that drives development in Calgary, and in particular the Rivers District, with the desire to begin construction early in 2019. Thank you to Premier Notley for understanding the needs of Calgary and southern Alberta, and helping position our city for future growth and opportunity.”

David Sibbald, president and chairman of the board, Calgary Stampede 

In addition to the more than 1.2 million visitors Stampede Park welcomes annually during the 10-day Calgary Stampede, the BMO Centre is a hub of activity year-round, hosting more than 1,200 events, from conferences to celebrations and corporate events.

In addition to the expansion of the BMO Centre on Stampede Park, the Calgary Rivers District CRL extension will allow for $140 million in infrastructure upgrades in Victoria Park, and future transformation of Arts Commons, which includes the Jack Singer Concert Hall, Max Bell Theatre, Martha Cohen Theatre, Big Secret Theatre and the Engineered Air Theatre.   

Ultimately, the CRL extension will transform Calgary’s Victoria Park into a vibrant, high-density, mixed-use community that draws on the beauty of its natural surroundings, the strength of its cultural heritage and the vitality of its entertainment roots.

Quick facts

  • The Community Revitalization Levy program is a planning and financial tool under the Municipal Government Act that helps municipalities revitalize areas where redevelopment would not otherwise occur.
  • A CRL allows a municipality to use municipal and education property tax revenues from increased property values in a specific area to help finance infrastructure required to spur new development.
  • This levy will allow for funding of critical infrastructure in the area, including provincial contributions intended for the expansion of the BMO Centre on Stampede Park, the future transformation of Arts Commons, and infrastructure upgrades in the Rivers District.
  • The BMO Centre is currently an 80,770-square-metre (265,000-square-foot) facility. The expansion of the BMO Centre is made possible through a legislative amendment to allow the normal CRL term of 20 years to be modified.
  • Over the 40-year period of the CRL, private developers will invest an estimated $8 billion to $11 billion in new developments in the area. To date, approximately $2.8 billion in planned investment has already been realized in East Village. These investments are bringing residents, businesses and visitors into the area.
  • Calgary city council will hold a public hearing to discuss a revised Rivers District CRL Bylaw in 2019. Once approved, the bylaw must be sent to the province for approval in accordance with provincial legislation.

Link to source


Housing help for Calgary women in crisis

Minister Kathleen Ganley tours Calgary’s new Maple supportive housing apartments for women in crisis along with Lenore Mossing (left) of YWCA Calgary and Matt Vermunt (right) of HomeSpace.

This month, residents will move into 25 new permanent supportive housing units at the Maple. In-home supports will help women who have experienced frequent or long-term homelessness move from crisis to stability.

Residents will have round-the-clock access to counselling supports, as well as culturally appropriate trauma recovery programs. A community space, shared kitchen and meeting rooms will help provide a sense of community and build stability for its residents.

Kathleen Ganley, Minister of Justice and Solicitor General, on behalf of Lori Sigurdson, Minister of Seniors and Housing, made the announcement, along with Kent Hehr, MP for Calgary Centre, on behalf of Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC).

“Providing women with a safe, supportive place to call home is vital in helping them rebuild their lives after living in homelessness. The Maple will fill a critical gap in services, with a range of wraparound services, including trauma recovery, counselling and access to employment supports. Together, we can help break the cycle of chronic homelessness for these women.”

Lori Sigurdson, Minister of Seniors and Housing

“Our government is working hard to provide Canadians with safe, affordable housing, to strengthen communities and build a more inclusive society. The Maple provides a safe, stable environment and a chance at a fresh start to dozens of women from the community. Through collaboration with non-profit groups and with our partners in government, we’re creating housing solutions for some of Calgary’s most vulnerable residents – right now. I am proud to be a part of this incredibly important work.”

Kent Hehr, MP for Calgary Centre

“HomeSpace Society is proud to partner with Homes by Avi through the RESOLVE Campaign and Calgary Homeless Foundation on our sixth new permanent supportive housing development. As a non-market property developer and building manager, our strong community partnerships are critical for the work that we do in continually adding to the affordable housing stock in our city and providing homes and dignity to some of Calgary’s most vulnerable residents.”

Bernadette Majdell, CEO, HomeSpace Society

“This collaboration between government, the Calgary Homeless Foundation, HomeSpace Society, Homes by Avi, the RESOLVE Campaign and YW Calgary is a demonstration that homelessness can end when we intentionally choose to work together. The Maple will provide 25 women experiencing homelessness with a place to call home and a place of belonging from which to build a better future.”

Diana Krecsy, president and CEO, Calgary Homeless Foundation

“Thanks to the Government of Alberta and the generous contribution of Homes by Avi and other philanthropic donors to the RESOLVE Campaign, 25 women will soon have access to permanent supportive housing where they can begin to rebuild their lives. We have made great strides, thanks to the generous donors to the campaign, to ensure all Calgarians have a place to call home.”

Alan Norris, chair, RESOLVE Campaign

“Women’s homelessness is complex and often hidden. Women will often couch surf or remain in abusive relationships to avoid becoming homeless. YW case managers will work closely with women and provide trauma-informed programs and support. Each woman will live in her own beautiful apartment suite to help her move from surviving to thriving. We are so grateful to be the agency invited to provide this important programming.” 

Sue Tomney, CEO, YWCA Calgary

Quick facts

  • The governments of Alberta and Canada jointly contributed approximately $3.6 million under the Investment in Affordable Housing Agreement.  
  • Additional funding was secured through the RESOLVE Campaign and the City of Calgary’s Housing Incentive Program. 
  • YWCA Calgary will begin moving women in need into the supportive apartments around the holidays.
  • Last year, the Government of Alberta launched its first Provincial Affordable Housing Strategy, including a
    $1.2-billion commitment to build affordable housing across the province.
  • The Government of Canada is currently rolling out its National Housing Strategy (NHS) – an ambitious 10-year, $40-billion plan that will create 100,000 new housing units and lift 530,000 families out of housing need, as well as repair and renew more than 300,000 housing units and reduce chronic homelessness by 50 per cent.  Under the NHS, a target of 33 per cent of all investments will support the unique needs of women and their children.
  • The NHS is built on strong partnerships between federal, provincial and territorial governments, and on continuous engagement with others, including municipalities, Indigenous governments and organizations, and the social and private sectors, to make a meaningful difference in the lives of Canadians.

Associated links

The Government of Alberta ministry of Seniors and Housing fosters the development of affordable housing and supports access to housing options for Albertans most in need. The ministry works with seniors, Albertans who require housing supports, their families and caregivers, communities and other government partners. A more detailed description of the ministry and its programs and initiatives can be found at seniors-housing.gov.ab.ca.

Learn more about the Provincial Affordable Housing Strategy.

As Canada’s authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. For more information, please visit cmhc.ca or follow us on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.

To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, visit placetocallhome.ca.

Editor’s Note: the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation also issued this news release on Dec. 18, 2018.

Government of Canada logo

Link to source


Happy trails ahead for active Albertans

Riders enjoy part of The Great Trail (formerly Trans Canada Trail) in the County of Lacombe.

Breaking new trail, enhancing existing trail and adding bridges and signage are some of the 12 Great Trail projects that will receive funding.

“Alberta’s incredible trail network attracts tourists from around the world, helps Albertans be more active and connects people to nature. We are pleased to contribute to this legacy with our continuing support for The Great Trail.”

Ricardo Miranda, Minister of Culture and Tourism

The Great Trail, formerly the Trans Canada Trail, is a national network of trails stretching more than 24,000 kilometres from the Atlantic to the Pacific and Arctic oceans. Three thousand kilometres of trail are in Alberta.

Alberta TrailNet is a non-profit organization that represents the province for The Great Trail. It will manage the new $1.93 million in funding for Alberta trails.

“On behalf of Alberta TrailNet Society and its regional and local trail partners, I’d like to express our sincere thanks for this funding which will enable continued work on the trail. Provincial funding has been critical in mobilizing volunteer resources and community support and in leveraging investments from donors and other levels of government. Many communities and thousands of recreational users have benefited from this and other provincial investments in the trail.”

Ross Hayes, president, Board of Directors, Alberta TrailNet Society

Alberta has the second-longest portion of The Great Trail. The trail passes through 77 of Alberta’s cities, towns and villages, 24 rural municipal districts and several Indigenous communities. Portions of the trail are being moved off roadways to improve safety. To date, the Alberta government has invested nearly $10 million in The Great Trail.

Support for The Great Trail aligns with the guiding principles of a pan-Canadian policy document released in May 2018, A Common Vision for Increasing Physical Activity and Reducing Sedentary Living in Canada.

These projects received funding:

  • Peace River Wilderness Trail (near Smith) – improvements to trail surface and drainage, and construction of a staging area, including washrooms, at the southern end.
  • DesNethe’ Discovery Trail (near Fitzgerald and the NWT border) – surface improvements, clearing, and installing culverts.
  • Will Marx Trail (north of Grouard) – bridge installation.
  • Arctic Water route (between Athabasca and Fort Smith) – signage, including design, locations, materials and installation.
  • Electric Dielectric Trail (between Canmore and Deadman’s Flats) – footbridge installation.
  • Irricana to Beiseker Trail – new trail construction, including surfacing, fencing and signage.
  • Hope Adventure Camp Trail (Sturgeon River) – upgrading of existing trail, including widening and adding signage.
  • McKelvie Trail (near Ponoka) – trail development and suspension bridge installation.
  • Opal Area Grazing Reserve Trail (Athabasca Landing Trail, northeast of Edmonton) – trail development to connect Athabasca Landing Trail to Half Moon Lake Trail.
  • Meanook to Perryville (Athabasca Landing Trail) – development of small staging area and preservation of existing trail.
  • Diamond Willow Trail (south of Ponoka) – bank stabilization and engineering work to preserve existing trail.
  • Beiseker Station Grounds Trail (near Beiseker) – new trail construction, including fencing, signage and a staging area.

Link to source


Wind projects create jobs, Indigenous partnerships

Minister Phillips announces five new wind projects as part of Alberta’s Renewable Electricity Program.

The five successful projects are made possible through the latest phase of the Alberta government’s Renewable Electricity Program. They include investments from Albertan companies, as well as from new investors from outside the province, with companies from Ontario and France.

In total, the new developments will create about 1,000 jobs and generate about 760 megawatts of affordable renewable electricity – enough to power nearly 300,000 homes.

“Our made-in-Alberta plan is working to once again turn Alberta’s renewable energy resources into new jobs and investment in communities across the province, while producing the lowest-cost power available for Albertans. These major private investments in southern Alberta wind projects also bring important professional service opportunities to downtown Calgary and new economic opportunities for Indigenous communities, making it a win-win for all Albertans.”

Shannon Phillips, Minister of Environment and Parks

Three of the wind projects are private-sector partnerships with First Nations, which include a minimum 25 per cent Indigenous equity component that will help create jobs and new economic benefits. Additional opportunities may include skills training and educational opportunities.

“We sincerely thank Premier Rachel Notley and the current government for opening the door for Indigenous partnerships with industry in this program. This is an important first step in economic reconciliation that helps our children and their children prosper alongside other Albertans for generations to come. We’re greatly looking forward to partnering with EDF Renewables, as they recognize and respect the importance of our traditional and ancestral lands. I also want to thank our partners at Indigena Capital, who assist us in empowering our rights and resources by sourcing the capital we need to be able to profit from our participation in initiatives like this.”

Chief Roy Fox, Kainai First Nation

In addition to new local jobs and contracting, the five projects will bring an estimated $175 million in rural benefits over the life of the projects, including landowner payments and municipal revenues.

The weighted average price of 3.9 cents per kilowatt hour for the latest round of projects is just shy of the Canadian record-low price achieved by Alberta in 2017 and continues to be among the lowest in the country, including less than half the price of a recent procurement in Ontario.

“For over 100 years we have produced reliable power for Albertans, and we are pleased to have been awarded the contract to supply Albertans with 20 years of renewable energy. The Renewable Electricity Program contract and the Windrise project enable TransAlta to proudly continue to invest in and grow in Alberta.”

Dawn Farrell, president and CEO, TransAlta Corporation

Each of these projects are expected to begin construction in 2020 and be fully operational by mid-2021:

  • TransAlta Corporation (Alberta-based) will build the 207-megawatt Windrise project, southwest of Fort MacLeod.
  • EDF Renewables Canada Inc. (subsidiary of France-based company) will build the 202-megawatt Cypress Wind Power project near Medicine Hat in partnership with the Kainai First Nation.
  • Capstone Infrastructure Corporation (Ontario-based) will build the 48-megawatt Buffalo Atlee wind farms near Brooks in partnership with the Sawridge First Nation.
  • Potentia Renewables Inc. (Ontario-based) will build the 113-megawatt Stirling Wind project near Lethbridge in partnership with the Paul First Nation, as well as Calgary-based Greengate Power Corporation.
  • Potentia Renewables Inc. will build two phases of the Jenner Wind Project near Brooks, for a total of 193 megawatts.

In total, Alberta’s Renewable Electricity Program will support the development of 5,000 megawatts of renewable electricity to reach a target of 30 per cent renewable energy by 2030 while creating more than 7,000 jobs for Albertans.

Support for the Renewable Electricity Program is made possible by reinvesting revenues from carbon pricing under the Climate Leadership Plan. The program is not funded from consumer power bills in any way.

Additional quotes

Government of Alberta:

“This is a historic announcement, showing our government’s true commitment to partnering with Indigenous communities to create new jobs and economic opportunities. First Nations have played a key role in Alberta’s renewable electricity sector, and this is only a first step in a meaningful, long-term relationship of developing green power with Indigenous communities.”

Richard Feehan, Minister of Indigenous Relations

“Alberta isn’t just a proud leader in oil and gas; we’re a leader in renewable energy, too. Once again, these low prices are beyond expectation, showing that our made-in-Alberta plan is getting results. We’re making life better by creating new jobs and attracting investment from around the world, including homegrown Alberta companies.”

Margaret McCuaig-Boyd, Minister of Energy

Support from economic development organizations:

“Calgary is Canada’s energy capital, with the expertise, skills and entrepreneurial spirit to build world-class projects in solar, oil, wind, gas, clean tech and beyond. Our diversity of resources is the definition of true energy leadership and with Alberta offering the some of the strongest opportunities for renewable energy development in North America, Calgary is the location of choice for Canadian and international renewable energy developers.”

Steve Allan, executive chair, Calgary Economic Development

“We’re proud that the first utility-scale wind farms in Canada were built in southern Alberta back in the 1990s, and since then, have been an important source of low-carbon electricity and a key economic driver of our region. Today’s news is another great example of how wind energy development has positive impacts for landowners and communities by providing new revenue, creating new jobs and offering generations of opportunity for southern Albertans and people across the province.”

Trevor Lewington, CEO, Economic Development Lethbridge

First Nations involved in this program:

“The current Alberta government should be credited for fostering relationships between Indigenous communities, industry and non-profit organizations like ours to build opportunities that benefit all Albertans. This program is an important entry point into Alberta’s renewable energy sector, providing much-needed revenue streams and employment opportunities for First Nations while generating economic and environmental benefits for the province as a whole. FNPA is pleased to have been part of the discussions that formed the foundation for where we are today, and we believe the knowledge gained will lead to even greater success for First Nations in the future.”

Guy Lonechild, CEO, First Nations Power Authority

“We share the pleasure of the announcement with our partners, Capstone. This project is a great step for Sawridge First Nation as it helps us move forward in our continued endeavors towards self-reliance, while balancing the need for energy and protecting Mother Earth for our future generations.”

Chief Roland Twinn, Sawridge First Nation 

Wind energy sector support:

“With this announcement of five low-cost wind energy projects, it’s clear that wind energy is well positioned to provide the affordable, emission-free electricity needed to meet Alberta’s ambitious renewable electricity targets. It’s also clear from the number of companies bidding into the procurement process that wind energy developers continue to prioritize Alberta as a destination for new investment.”

Robert Hornung, president, CanWEA

“EDF Renewables is very pleased to be investing in Alberta, which, thank you to this government’s commitment, has made the province one of North America’s most competitive and successful markets for renewable energy. We’re proud to be partnering with the Kainai First Nation (Blood Tribe) on the Cypress Wind Project. It will create hundreds of well-paying jobs, invest millions into Cypress County and Alberta’s economy, while generating affordable renewable electricity for Albertans.”

Cory Basil, VP Development, EDF Renewables

“We are excited about the successful collaboration of Potentia and our excellent local development partners. Alberta is an attractive investment environment and we are pleased to invest almost $500 million of capital into these long-term projects. We look forward to continuing to work with the Government of Alberta, the Paul First Nation and our host communities and landowners to deliver clean power to the Alberta grid, along with the jobs and local economic growth that accompany projects like these.”

Jeff Jenner, CEO, Potentia Renewables Inc.

 “We are extremely pleased to be investing in Alberta with our partner, the Sawridge First Nation. The development, construction, and operations of the Buffalo Atlee Wind Farm will provide significant environmental benefits, create jobs, drive local economic activity and deliver excellent value to Alberta ratepayers. We look forward to completing this exciting project in Alberta, which has become a destination of choice for renewable energy investment.”

David Eva, CEO, Capstone Infrastructure

Link to source


Alberta gets federal disaster mitigation funding

The federal government is providing $8.7 million through the National Disaster Mitigation Program for 18 projects. They include new or replacement flood mapping for Drumheller, Medicine Hat, Siksika Nation, Red Deer, and more than 100 kilometres of the North Saskatchewan River, including Edmonton.

The province is contributing more than $5 million to the projects as part of the cost-sharing agreement.

“Our government is committed to investing in flood resilience to better protect Albertans where they live and work. The provincial and federal funding for flood mapping and community risk assessments will help us build safer communities over the long term and ensure Alberta is better prepared for severe weather events in the future.”

Shannon Phillips, Minister of Environment and Parks

“The Government of Canada, in partnership with provinces and territories, is committed to reducing the impacts of flooding on Canadians by investing in projects that allow communities to identify, plan for, and reduce flood risks.  Investing in programming like the National Disaster Mitigation Program is an important part of the Government of Canada’s strategy to address the soaring costs of natural disasters. The projects announced today will help the province of Alberta better prepare for and respond to floods.”

Randy Boissonnault, Member of Parliament for Edmonton Centre, on behalf of the Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness

Provincial and federal funding will also be used to assess the potential for debris floods near Canmore, stormwater vulnerabilities in Calgary and flood risks in smaller communities such as Manning, Stettler, Lacombe and the Municipal District of Crowsnest Pass.

Projects to improve forecasting and warning systems and improve access and interaction with provincial flood-inundation maps also received funding.

Alberta has launched 13 river hazard studies since 2015, including those that are wholly funded by the province. In total, these studies will produce new and replacement flood mapping for over 1,300 kilometres of river through more than 30 communities. Many of these studies are nearing completion.

Since 2013, the Alberta government has invested more than $700 million in community-level resilience projects, erosion control, upstream storage, flood mapping, flood forecasting and emergency preparedness, and watershed health to improve flood and drought resilience across the province.

Link to source


’Tis the season for fire safety

Your homes may be bustling with activity and it’s easy to get distracted. When cooking, keep an eye on the stove and other hot appliances. Blow out candles before going to bed and do not overload electrical outlets with Christmas lights, cellphone cords and other devices.

“With the busy holiday season upon us, I urge folks to keep fire safety top of mind. Nothing is more important as we gather with family and friends than making sure we all stay safe.”

Shaye Anderson, Minister of Municipal Affairs

People should plan and practise a fire escape plan that has two exits. Make sure your home is equipped with smoke and carbon monoxide alarms that work. Test them monthly and replace batteries annually.

Quick checks

  • Use extension cords wisely – avoid overloading and placing them under rugs.
  • Water your Christmas tree.
  • Keep (or place) space heaters at least one metre from curtains, furniture and decorations, and turn them off when not in use.
  • Safely stub cigarettes; a large, closed ashtray is recommended.
  • Test and dispose of any frayed cords or lightbulbs on decorative lights.

Link to source


New homes, expanded care for Boyle seniors

Minister Sigurdson, centre, MLA Colin Piquette, second from right, and community leaders celebrate the official opening of the Wild Rose Villa in Boyle.

Thirty-six new lodge units and 22 designated supportive living units provide different levels of care and flexible options to help more seniors age closer to home as their health-care needs change.

The lodge is bright and modern and offers affordable, flexible housing options. Wild Rose Assisted Living and Wild Rose Villa designated supportive living facility has a capacity of up to 62 residents including four suites for couples. It features a wide range of amenities including a hair salon, recreational spaces for activities and a chapel. It replaces the former lodge that had reached the end of its life cycle.

The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC), and the Honourable Lori Sigurdson, Minister of Alberta Seniors and Housing, made the announcement today.

“Wild Rose Assisted Living and Wild Rose Villa is a beautiful new facility that provides seniors in Boyle with a comfortable, modern place to call home. The higher levels of care now available in Boyle mean residents and couples can continue to live in their home community as their needs change. This a fantastic investment for the community of Boyle and another example of our government’s work supporting seniors and their families in rural communities.”

Lori Sigurdson, Alberta Minister of Seniors and Housing

“Every Canadian should be able to retire in dignity. This is why we are taking action to support seniors including restoring the retirement age from 67 to 65, increasing GIS and OAS. I am delighted to see that construction is complete at the new Wild Rose Assisted Living and Wild Rose Villa. This is truly a community achievement—it takes collaboration from all levels of government and the clear vision of dedicated partners like the Greater North Foundation to turn projects like this into a reality. Together, we have helped ensure that the housing needs of seniors in Boyle are met for many years to come.”

Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Families, Children and Social Development and Minister Responsible for Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation

“We are excited to officially open the Wild Rose Assisted Living and Wild Rose Villa – this is great news for Boyle and nearby communities. The investment by the federal and provincial governments demonstrates their commitment to Alberta seniors and to Boyle.”

Doris Splane, chair, Greater North Foundation

“Having a facility like the Wild Rose Assisted Living and Wild Rose Villa has been a major part of maintaining a sense of family. The ability for all four generations – great grandkids, grandkids, children and parents – to get together for coffee or ice cream or special occasions is a great gift that isn’t taken lightly. Our appreciation for the care and dignity that our elders are treated with is immeasurable.”

Dianna Wetzel, daughter of Wild Rose Assisted Living resident

Quick facts

  • The governments of Alberta and Canada provided a combined investment of about $13.1 million under the Investment in Affordable Housing Agreement.
  • The new Wild Rose Villa and designated supportive living facility will provide 36 new lodge units and 22 designated supportive living units.
  • The Government of Alberta is providing $3.1 million through the Affordable Supportive Living Initiative to build the 22 designated supportive living units.
  • Designated supportive living (DSL) units include health-care services of various levels, such as DSL3 (health-care aides provide scheduled care), DSL4 (professional nursing care on-site 24 hours for unscheduled care needs) and SL4D (specialized dementia care).  
  • Last year, the Government of Alberta launched the province’s first Affordable Housing Strategy, including a $1.2-billion commitment to build affordable housing across the province.
  • The Government of Canada is currently rolling out its National Housing Strategy (NHS) – an ambitious 10-year, $40-billion plan that will create 100,000 new housing units and lift 530,000 families out of housing need, as well as repair and renew more than 300,000 housing units and reduce chronic homelessness by 50 per cent.
  • The NHS is built on strong partnerships between federal, provincial and territorial governments, and on continuous engagement with others, including municipalities, Indigenous governments and organizations, and the social and private sectors, to make a meaningful difference in the lives of Canadians.

Associated links

As Canada’s authority on housing, CMHC contributes to the stability of the housing market and financial system, provides support for Canadians in housing need and offers unbiased housing research and advice to all levels of Canadian government, consumers and the housing industry. For more information, please visit cmhc.ca or follow us on Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Facebook.

To find out more about the National Housing Strategy, visit placetocallhome.ca.

The Government of Alberta ministry of Seniors and Housing fosters the development of affordable housing and supports access to housing options for Albertans most in need. The ministry works with seniors, Albertans who require housing supports, their families and caregivers, communities and other government partners. A more detailed description of the ministry and its programs and initiatives can be found at seniors-housing.gov.ab.ca.

Editor’s Note: This news release was also issued by the Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation on Dec. 14, 2018.

Government of Canada logo

Link to source


Compassionate community living for Calgary seniors

The Wing Kei Greenview now has 175 spaces, which include 95 designated supportive living and dementia spaces, as well as an indoor garden, chapel and areas for leisure activities. Cultural- specific programming and supports are central to Wing Kei’s approach to individualized seniors care.

“Seniors in Calgary and across Alberta deserve to age with dignity in their communities and close to their families. I’m proud of our work with partners like the Chinese Christian Wing Kei Nursing Home Association to ensure Alberta seniors and persons with complex needs have access to the care they need, in a place they like and that feels like home.”

Sarah Hoffman, Minister of Health

“Today’s opening will give seniors and their families in Calgary peace of mind, knowing residents will be provided with the utmost in care, in homelike spaces that reflect the diverse cultures of the people in our community. Thank you to the Government of Alberta for their commitment to supporting important projects like this.”

Dr. Verna Yiu, president and CEO, Alberta Health Services

In 2016, the province provided $5 million in Affordable Supportive Living Initiative capital grant funding to the Chinese Christian Wing Kei Nursing Home Association for Greenview Long-term Care.

“Wing Kei started as a dream, written on a napkin mid-flight from Calgary to Toronto. Our dream to serve seniors with utmost love permeates every aspect of our organization. The support and trust of government, Alberta Health Services, and our generous community has propelled our growth and enabled us to be responsive to seniors needs in Calgary.”

Vincent Leung, board chair, Wing Kei

“My husband and I have been living in different facilities for six years but we have been reunited at Wing Kei. It’s very special to be together in a facility that feels so much like home.”

Kok Ying Tsang, Wing Kei Greenview resident

The provincial government’s new continuing care capital grant funding program, Building Communities of Care, focuses on developing continuing care spaces where they are needed most. The province allocated $221 million in capital dollars over five years, in Budget 2018, to increase capacity for long-term care and designated supportive living.

Link to source


Students to benefit from new K-4 curriculum

Minister Eggen and Parliamentary Secretary McKitrick participate in a financial literacy learning opportunity with grade 4 students from Garneau School.

In June 2016, Alberta Education and the Alberta Teachers’ Association began the development of future kindergarten to Grade 4 curriculum, simultaneously in English and French, in language arts (English, French, Français), mathematics, social studies, sciences, arts and wellness.

This curriculum rewrite is the first of its kind in Alberta. It focuses on rewriting all core subject areas at once so that all subjects complement each other, allowing students to develop literacy, numeracy and competencies like critical thinking in each subject and grade.

Government asked Albertans to provide feedback on the draft curriculum through surveys, telephone town halls and curriculum roundtables held across the province. More than 100,000 people responded, making it the most open and transparent curriculum rewrite in Alberta Education’s history.

“Our government is fulfilling its promise to develop and deliver a modernized kindergarten to Grade 12 provincial curriculum. Field-testing future curriculum in the classroom is an important part of our process and it helps to ensure that what looks good on paper also makes sense in the classroom. We will continue to work with our education partners and stakeholders to ensure that future curriculum is ready for students in a timely matter.”

David Eggen, Minister of Education

“Through consultation and working group participation, thousands of classroom teachers have provided input into this draft curriculum. Teachers are excited by the curriculum and it is in their classrooms where it will be brought to life. We will now begin a period of extensive field-testing and evaluation that will ultimately result in a program of studies that will serve Alberta students well, now and into the future.”

Greg Jeffery, president, Alberta Teachers’ Association

“It’s been a long time coming for the curriculum to include First Nations, Métis and Inuit perspectives, experiences and history. We are the first people of this land, major contributors to this country, and have faced and continue to face so many obstacles. It is important to have our world view be included in the new curriculum, as it will teach the truth about our shared history, allowing students to become to understand our ways of knowing as we are all distinct and diverse because of the land where we come from. It also allows us to get rid of stereotypes and misconceptions and begin the process of reconciliation moving towards Reconcili-Action. The new curriculum is concept-based to allow our education system to become more holistic.”

Jamie Ahksistowaki Medicine Crane, Alberta Education

“La nouvelle diversité dans nos communautés francophones fait que ce nouveau curriculum répondra mieux aux besoins de tous les apprenants dans nos écoles francophones. Aussi, les notions clés dans le nouveau curriculum nous permettront de reconnaître notre identité culturelle et notre langue dans toutes les matières, et non seulement dans les arts langagiers. Ainsi, elles permettront à nos collègues anglophones de fournir à leurs apprenants la perspective francophone dans leur programmation.”

Micheline Spencer, enseignante de langue française

“This new curriculum will provide teachers in francophone and anglophone schools across Alberta the opportunity to share the important contributions from our diversified francophone communities. In addition, since the francophone perspective will be evident in all subjects in both languages, it provides the francophone community the opportunity to communicate loudly and proudly its cultural identity and the importance of the francophone language in our worldlier-focused curriculum.”

Micheline Spencer, francophone teacher

“I have had the opportunity to be a collaborative voice in the process of updating the Alberta curriculum. The new curriculum is designed to be modern and reflective of who we are as a province. I am excited about the opportunities it provides students.”

Amanda Forster, teacher

“I have had the opportunity to work with hundreds of teachers who have looked at the draft curriculum since April. Most teachers say they are excited and optimistic about the changes. I believe this curriculum will help prepare students for a life in a complex and interconnected world.”

Colette Mondor, teacher


  • Targeted timelines for ministerial approval of curriculum
    • Grades K-4: December 2018
    • Grades 5-9: December 2019
    • Grades 10-12: December 2020 to 2022
  • Implementation timelines have yet to be established. Current curriculum remains in effect until implementation timelines have been developed.

Government has also launched a new platform where people can view the draft curriculum: new LearnAlberta.ca website.

Link to source


Grande Prairie highway projects boost local economy

Premier Notley announces two infrastructure projects that will improve travel in the Grande Prairie region.

Nineteen kilometres of Highway 40 will be twinned between Grande Prairie and south of the Wapiti River area. A full interchange will also be built at the intersection of Highways 43 and 43X – the new Grande Prairie bypass – following the scheduled opening of the bypass in the summer of 2019.

“The Grande Prairie region plays a vital part in our province’s economy. Our investment in these projects will improve our highway networks, support economic growth and ensure the safe and efficient movement of vehicles through the region.”

Rachel Notley, Premier

“These highway routes continue to experience steady growth and are essential to the economic development of the Grande Prairie area. These projects will not only improve access to industrial and residential expansion, but will significantly improve safety for all travellers.”

Brian Mason, Minister of Transportation

“Collectively our region has worked hard to raise these projects with the government and we appreciate that they listened to our needs. The Grande Prairie area is expected to double in population over the next 20 years and so, in addition to making roads safer, these projects will support job creation and recognize the growing contribution our area makes to the Alberta economy.” 

Bill Given, mayor, City of Grande Prairie

“These highway improvements will make our work and communities safer and more efficient, now, and for several generations into the future.”

Jordan Johnsen, vice-president, Operations and Engineering, Seven Generations Energy

“Our region as a whole, including the City of Grande Prairie, County of Grande Prairie and Municipal District of Greenview, will all benefit tremendously from these projects which will allow for safer travel for residents, employees and visitors alike, and pave the way for continued exponential growth of this area, both in population and business development.” 

Dan Wong, chair, Grande Prairie & District Chamber of Commerce

Quick facts

  • The population of Grande Prairie is expected to grow from 63,000 to 121,000 by 2037.
  • Highway 43 is part of the National Highway System and northern section of the Canamex Trade Corridor that connects to the U.S. interstate system.
  • Through Grande Prairie, Highway 43 averages 27,000 vehicle trips daily.
  • Each day, more than 10,000 vehicles travel the section of Highway 40 to be twinned.
  • The Highway 40 project also includes:
    • A second bridge across the Wapiti River, with a pedestrian walkway.
    • Intersection improvements and new traffic signals.
    • Upgraded lighting to LED.

During construction, both highway projects are expected to support more than 700 direct and indirect jobs in the region.

Link to source