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Five firms in the mix for airport redevelopment

The plan to redevelop the land where the City Centre Airport currently sits will still generate big dollars despite a quarterly report released by the city yesterday that shows a significant drop in net sales revenue.

The plan to redevelop the land where the City Centre Airport currently sits will still generate big dollars despite a quarterly report released by the city yesterday that shows a significant drop in net sales revenue.

The report showed a revenue of $70 million as well as an annual tax revenue of $20 million — if the city were to sell the land to a developer rather than act as the developer itself.

But that isn’t an option being considered.


Initial numbers from the city estimate the revenue to be between $91 million and $486 million with the city acting as the developer — numbers it says are still accurate.

The plan for the 217-hectare site includes both residential and commercial, and there is currently an international design competition underway.

“We want people to be able to live here, to work here and to play here,” said Phil Sandes, executive director of City Centre Redevelopment.

The idea for the area focuses on walkability, sustainable development, and minimizing the use of cars — as well as on biking and transit.

There are currently five firms competing in the competition to redevelop the land. Their proposals are due Jan. 21, and a selection committee will make a recommendation to council by the end of March.

The master plan process to follow will take approximately 15 months, said Sands, and will include significant public involvement.

Some of the public still isn’t in favour of redeveloping the land, especially those involved with Envision Edmonton, who are still trying to get their petition considered after it was deemed invalid in September.

Chairman Charles Allard said the land should still be used for institutional purposes.

He suggested developing land between 96 Street and 124 Street, as well as an area in Griesbach, as opposed to the City Centre Airport.

Sandes said the idea behind the redevelopment is to create urban development as opposed to suburban.

The increase in residential density from 24,000 initially to 30,000 might also be met with some opposition.

“I have heard lots of citizens say they don’t want 30,000, which would affect their (property) value,” said Coun. Kim Krushell. “It would bring it down.”

Krushell also criticized city administration for bringing forth a report with inaccurate information while a public hearing was ongoing in council chambers.

 
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