WATCH ABOVE: The first phase of the Blatchford redevelopment project has begun. Mayor Don Iveson was on hand for Wednesday’s ground breaking.
EDMONTON – Ground has been broken on the first phase of the Blatchford redevelopment project. Work has begun on underground utilities at the site.
The project will turn the site of the former City Centre Airport into one of the world’s largest sustainable communities, eventually becoming home to 30,000 people.
“We do think we have something unique here, something in between urban and lower density residential communities that I think is going to be very, very family friendly and people are going to want to be close to the amenities,” said Mayor Don Iveson.
The Blatchford community will include gardens, energy-efficient buildings and custom-designed streets for walking and cycling.
Iveson is confident the development will be a success despite some economic uncertainty.
“It’s important to realize that this is a 30-year project, and there’s a lot of developers who are moving ahead in servicing right now so that they’re ready for when oil comes back and demand comes back up,” said Iveson.
“So housing starts may be down but that doesn’t mean that private developers aren’t investing as well.”
The project has been moving forward better than expected so far. Demolition and environmental re-mediation were completed at $290,000, which was well below the anticipated $1-million cost.