Edmonton is developing a new park just a few blocks away from MacEwan! The park site is in the heart of downtown, replacing the parking lot between 106 and 108 Street. It will also directly connect to the Corona LRT station. This new park is directed by the Downtown Public Places Plan and will incorporate plans for Streetscapes on 106 and 107 Street.
The City of Edmonton has conducted surveys in the past year that asked citizens what they would like to see more of in new developments. The results show the importance of year-round usability/accessibility and more natural greenery to Edmontonians, both of which are planned in this project.
Described as an “urban oasis,” it will feature several amenities, including a basketball court, off-leash dog area, playground, and fitness area. This will all be surrounded by benches and tables for ping pong, chess, and more. It is planned to seamlessly integrate into the surrounding area with two pedestrian promenades cutting through the park. The promenades will provide space for art fairs, food trucks, and summer markets.
The project designs emphasize providing space for year-round, all-ages activities and will feature a wood-fire themed water fountain that will turn into a “warming zone” during the winter months. A hill structure will also be built in the clearing to serve as a “natural amphitheater” for the summer and a sled hill for the winter.
In the middle of the park will be a strawberry-shaped open space surrounded by a 200-meter-long “ribbon of light” that will illuminate the clearing and resemble northern lights after dark. The park is located in the center of Edmonton’s O-day’min (“strawberry” in Anishinaabe) Ward. The strawberry shape represents a “symbol of a functioning community,” as described by Elder Theresa Strawberry.
The City of Edmonton is still welcoming input from the general public until Dec 4 and will finalize construction plans in the next year. Construction is planned to begin in 2024 and is expected to be completed by 2025.