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Edmonton selected as $50M Smart Cities Challenge finalist

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WATCH ABOVE: The City of Edmonton is a finalist in the federal government's Smart Cities Challenge. The winner will receive $50 million in funding to see their proposal through. Emily Mertz reports – Jun 1, 2018

The City of Edmonton is one step closer to winning a $50-million challenge.

Edmonton’s healthy city-themed pitch is one of five finalists in the federal government’s $50-million Smart Cities Challenge.

“This is great news for Edmonton and an exciting day for the Smart Cities Challenge team who’ve worked diligently and creatively with Edmontonians,” Mayor Don Iveson said.

“I’m confident that what has got us here — teamwork, innovation and courage — will help establish Edmonton as Canada’s healthiest and smartest city.”

READ MORE: Edmonton’s Smart Cities Challenge proposal gets federal government acceptance

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi made the announcement Friday morning at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities conference in Halifax.

Edmonton’s proposal focuses on having residents, post-secondary institutions, research organizations and governments work together to provide health services to Edmontonians.

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The city’s submission asks residents to embrace the idea that health in an urban community is connected with increasing a sense of belonging.

Edmonton now faces Montreal, Quebec City, Waterloo region and Vancouver/Surrey for the $50-million grand prize.

READ MORE: Edmontonians asked to submit health ideas for national Smart Cities challenge

Edmonton receives a $250,000 grant to complete the second phase of its proposal. The city said this phase will focus on building a plan to support connectedness to the community, decrease loneliness and increase a sense of belonging.

“The City of Edmonton is an international leader in open government, recognized worldwide for solving municipal challenges through data and analytics,” Open city and Technology branch manager Wendy Gnenz said.

“We have gathered a talented group of partners who are ready to take risks and work together for the well being of Canadians.”

The winner of the challenge will be announced in the spring of 2019.

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