The revitalization of Edmonton’s downtown east side could soon be funded by a new 8-per-cent tax on inner-city development.
An acquisition levy is being proposed by the city’s planning department to fund park space stretching north from Jasper Ave. up 96 Street. All development projects within the area — known as the Quarters — would have to pay the levy, based on the market value of their property.
Park space is a key part of the redevelopment plans for the area, located between 97 Street and 92 Street north of Jasper Avenue to 103A Avenue. Green space is planned in pockets throughout the neighbourhood, and along a boulevard called "the Armature," says senior city planner Duncan Fraser.
"This is one thing that really caught the imagination of the public, the creation of the Armature," he says. "So, we’re moving ahead with that idea and purchasing land."
The Quarters will comprise five distinct areas and maintain the heritage buildings along Jasper Ave. Most of the area’s surface parking lots, now used by commuters, will eventually be filled in with commercial or residential development.
Residents will be meeting tonight at 7 p.m. to discuss the proposed levy. The public meeting will take place at Alex Taylor School, at 9321 Jasper Ave.
A final revitalization plan for the area will then be submitted to city council for consideration later this year.