Edmonton Seeks Boundary Adjustment
March 05, 2013
Process aims to secure vital economic growth corridor, ensure strong core for sustainable regional prosperity
Edmonton City Council directed Administration to begin a process to extend the City’s southern boundary to facilitate responsible growth in the region.
The proposed boundary extension includes the corridor along the west side of the QE II Highway and encompasses the Edmonton International Airport.
This area would secure lands to accommodate strong demand for residential, business and employment growth within the City, which provides – and funds – the majority of infrastructure and support services in the metro region. A City administered corridor would also better facilitate the future LRT extension to the Airport.
“For Edmonton, this process is about securing land to accommodate natural growth along our southern boundary,” said Mayor Stephen Mandel. “We are continuing a discussion we started with the Leduc County a year ago to bring the right combination of infrastructure, municipal services and orderly growth management to a growth area that is vital to the future of our whole Capital Region.”
The land was identified as a priority growth area by the Capital Region Board, which oversees a region with 3.8% growth expected in 2013. Edmonton is seeking to manage the anticipated development, and apply Edmonton’s higher density and urban standards such as site servicing and enhanced traffic management.
“Edmonton is the employment, educational, cultural and social hub of the entire Capital Region. Completing this process will provide the infrastructure needed for our region’s promising growth,” says Mayor Mandel. “With these extensions of our boundary, we help manage growth in a way that avoids patchwork infrastructure, facilitates growth to an urban standard, avoids traffic congestion with integrated planning, and secures a commercial and growth tax base needed to help pay for the benefits we provide to the entire region.”
The City of Edmonton has sent a notice of intent to proceed with 2 annexation applications to the Municipal Government Board of the Government of Alberta, as well as to Leduc County and the Town of Beaumont. The process, which includes extensive consultation, can take 2 to 5 years.
The application also proposes extending Edmonton’s southern boundary to Township Road 510 near the northern edge of the Town of Beaumont and east of QE II Highway. This extension would allow continued growth of residential neighbourhoods currently developed at one of the highest density standards in the region. This proposed annexation does not include the lands within the Leduc County Nisku Industrial Area.
The City of Edmonton and Leduc County have been in collaborative discussions since April 2012. Discussions have been guided by the terms of a joint letter of intent to review the planning and development of lands in this area to an urban standard in compliance with the principles and objectives of the Capital Region Growth Plan.
The proposed boundary adjustments ensure land is available for a balance of residential and commercial development Edmonton needs to be sustainable for the long term. The commercial area up to and including the Airport has significant economic potential for the region and will help Edmonton to continue to fund amenities, infrastructure and opportunities that benefit the Capital Region.
“A strong, sustainable city at the core is vital to ensuring the entire region can compete in the global market and continue to attract investment, business and jobs,” says Mayor Mandel. “It is only fair for the municipality at the centre, with 70% of the region’s population, be able to grow and foster economic diversity.”
While boundary adjustments between neighbouring municipalities is a procedure laid out in the Municipal Government Act to ensure communities can have a long-term supply of land for future growth, this is the first annexation process Edmonton has undertaken in 30 years, compared with 16 in the Calgary area.
The City’s Municipal Development Plan requires a 30-year supply of land for future growth. Edmonton has not required to adjust its boundaries due to good planning for 3 decades, but some natural growth areas of the City do not have room to expand.
Visit www.edmonton.ca/regionalplanning for more information on the annexation proposals and process.
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