Blog > My Main Streets Downtown Strategy

My Main Streets Downtown Strategy

All areas of our city need our attention and there’s no way around it: a vibrant and connected city depends on a vibrant and connected downtown core. That’s how cities attract employers, new residents and taxpayers, and families. It’s a critical part of growing any urban community, and it’s essential to ensuring all Edmontonians can build a life and see a future here.

My Main Streets Downtown Strategy takes a holistic approach to what it means to have a thriving downtown core—a diverse neighbourhood that offers opportunities for Edmontonians to work, play and live.

Work

A prosperous and successful downtown depends on its resident employers, and they need our support. Of course, the pandemic has increased opportunities for employees to enjoy greater flexibility and working remotely. But what I’m hearing is that, in general, employees are looking for balance. Many of them are excited to return to the office and to workplace collaboration, to get away from never-ending Zoom calls, and to engage with their colleagues in 3D again.

My Main Streets Downtown Strategy will:

  • Support downtown employers, the Edmonton Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Business Association and other key business district stakeholders to remind Edmontonians of the advantages of coming to work downtown.
  • Explore a free-fare zone from Government Centre to Churchill Square to promote movement around our downtown core and improve accessibility for all Edmontonians.
  • Enhance parking app options, and work with local parking apps like Zipstall to support local business while improving the user experience in our downtown core for residents and visitors alike.
  • Encourage paved parking lots to enhance downtown’s beautification.
  • Bring our Business Revitalization Zones together with our City Administration to develop a strategy that provides tax or grant incentives to invest in our city’s core, helping eliminate empty storefronts on our main streets by providing spaces for non-profit agencies, cultural organizations, art installations and performing arts groups.

Play

Our downtown district provides the full range of entertainment, activities, and cultural experiences—sports, music, and interactive educational opportunities. These are the experiences that can bring Edmontonians from across our city together and bolster our tourism industry. We need to raise awareness and improve access so all Edmontonians and visitors can enjoy the opportunities to play.

My Main Streets Downtown Strategy will:

  • Package and market our downtown amenities such as Ice District, the Royal Alberta Museum, the Art Gallery of Alberta, the Winspear and Citadel Theatres, and the new Stanley Milner Library, including working with organizations to develop a Play for a Day all-access pass for individuals, pairs, and families.
  • Support and champion cornerstone attractions such as our Ice District, theatres and art galleries by making stable, multi-year funding commitments to these organizations during the economic recovery phase. Assist them in seeking the same consistent, reliable support from our federal and provincial governments.
  • Build a proactive plan to attract major e-sports and tech competitions such as the League of Legends championship and NASA I-Tech, and other major events suited to our second-to-none Rogers Place facility.
  • Collaborate with entertainment venues and organizations to incorporate transit fares into event tickets to encourage transit use and reduce downtown traffic congestion, including Commonwealth Stadium and Edmonton Expo Centre.
  • Commit funding to ensure the timely cleanup of our downtown streets on weekends and following major events.
  • Improve accessibility to key venues like Rogers Place and Churchill Square by streamlining and expediting construction processes resulting in faster project completion and reduced congestion.
  • Work with local tech companies to create interactive visual experiences—modeled after Pokeman Go—that embrace Edmonton’s history and highlights.

Live

What I love about our city is the tremendous diversity of our communities that meet the desires and needs of our citizens. Whether you prefer to live in a new, suburban area like The Hills at Charleswood with its award-winning Sustainability Plaza, or a central, mixed neighbourhood like McCauley, Edmonton has what you’re looking for. Of course, downtown living isn’t for everyone. But it is appealing to some—solo-dwellers, couples, and families alike. Our City government needs to ensure that our downtown is one that not only accommodates residents, but welcomes them and makes them feel safe.

My Main Streets Strategy will:

  • Collaborate with the development community to promote diverse downtown residential options that work for Edmontonians in all stages of life, including multi-generational housing options.
  • Commit to investing in permanent public water stations.
  • Implement a Bright Lights, Safe City program, utilizing innovative lighting technology to achieve dark sky requirements while enhancing lighting on our downtown streets and high traffic walkways and parks.
  • Support long-term and sustainable funding through our business revitalization zones for streetscape beautification projects like 104th Street Promenade and the Capital Boulevard Project.
  • Bolster our downtown’s competitiveness by working closely with internet service providers and telecom companies to ensure full connectivity and fast internet service.

I have consistently demonstrated my ability to get things done for our city’s downtown. In 2010, I put my election on the line for the municipal airport closure—something that spared taxpayers extraordinary and unsustainable expense and made buildings like Stantec Tower possible. I fought to decommission the costly trolley bus system. And I championed the development of our self-sustaining downtown arena district, even when it was unpopular and controversial.

If elected Mayor, I will continue to challenge the status quo, stand up for what’s right, and work hard to harness Edmonton’s vast potential. I’m optimistic about our future, and that includes the future of our city’s downtown core.

I am Kim Krushell and I am for Edmonton.