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IN PHOTOS: Behind-the-scenes tour of downtown Edmonton’s ever-evolving Ice District

Behind-the-scenes look at Edmonton’s Ice District
WATCH ABOVE: Global News gets an inside look at the rapidly developing Ice District in downtown Edmonton. As Vinesh Pratap reports, there are still hurdles to overcome.

Edmonton’s skyline is changing.

Wednesday marked the official opening of Canada’s tallest tower outside of Toronto: the Stantec Tower located right in the heart of Edmonton. With the addition of other prominent buildings, like Rogers Place and the J.W. Marriott Hotel, downtown Edmonton looks much different now than even just a few years ago.

READ MORE: Canada’s tallest tower west of Toronto opens in Edmonton

On Thursday, the media was given a behind-the-scenes look at construction progress in Ice District, which is planned to be the largest mixed-use sports and entertainment district in Canada.

“It’s going extremely well,” Katz Group President Glen Scott said of the construction progress.

“We built literally billions of dollars of infrastructure during the height of one of the worst economic downturns Albertans have ever faced. It’s not always smooth sailing but overall it’s been going exceptionally well.”

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One noticeable change to the original plan is the elimination of the movie theatre. Originally, the vision for the third skyscraper in Ice District included a movie theatre on the second floor. Officials announced Thursday the movie theatre is officially out of the plan.

READ MORE: Amenities for new tower coming to Edmonton’s Ice District yet to be determined: Katz Group

SKY Residences

High atop the 60-storey Stantec Tower sits 483 private condominium suites. SKY Residences also offers more than 20,000-square-feet of amenity space on the 30th floor, a rooftop patio, outdoor fireplaces and a fitness centre.

The condos will be ready for residents to move in next fall.

Scroll through the gallery below to see renderings of the SKY Residences 

A rendering inside the SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District.
A rendering inside the SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering inside the SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District.
A rendering inside the SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering inside the SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District.
A rendering inside the SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering inside the SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District.
A rendering inside the SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District.
A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District.
A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District
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A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District.
A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District.
A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District.
A rendering of SKY Residences in the Stantec Tower in Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District

READ MORE: At $3.13M, Edmonton’s priciest penthouse comes with $250K Bentley

J.W. Marriott

Edmonton will soon be home to just the third J.W. Marriott hotel in Canada. The 55-storey building with the city’s second-tallest tower, located right next door to the Stantec Tower.

The building will also be home to private residences, 10 meeting spaces and a restaurant operated by Oliver and Bonacini Restaurants.

Scroll through the gallery below to see construction progress and the vision for the tower.

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Construction on the Wayne Gretzky ballroom Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018.
Construction on the Wayne Gretzky ballroom Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. Vinesh Pratap, Global News
Construction on the Wayne Gretzky ballroom Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018.
Construction on the Wayne Gretzky ballroom Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. Vinesh Pratap, Global News
A rendering of the Wayne Gretzky ballroom.
A rendering of the Wayne Gretzky ballroom. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of J.W. Marriott at night.
A rendering of J.W. Marriott at night. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of the lobby bar.
A rendering of the lobby bar. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of the pool.
A rendering of the pool. Courtesy, Ice District
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A rendering of a meeting room.
A rendering of a meeting room. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of the lobby entrance.
A rendering of the lobby entrance. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of a king room.
A rendering of a king room. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of Kindred Food and Drink.
A rendering of Kindred Food and Drink. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of the Jari Kurri ballroom.
A rendering of the Jari Kurri ballroom. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of the health club.
A rendering of the health club. Courtesy, Ice District
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A rendering of the Glen Sather meeting room.
A rendering of the Glen Sather meeting room. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of the view of the J.W. Marriott from Ice District.
A rendering of the view of the J.W. Marriott from Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District
A rendering of the view of the J.W. Marriott from Ice District.
A rendering of the view of the J.W. Marriott from Ice District. Courtesy, Ice District

READ MORE: Developer sells downtown Edmonton parking stall for record-breaking price

Ice District Plaza

Construction continues on the 50,000-square-foot Ice District Plaza outside of Rogers Place. The vision for this space is to be the “epicentre of energy” within the downtown district.

Once complete, the plaza will be able to hold up to 8,000 people and utilized year-round. The plaza is expected to be open in the spring or summer of 2019.

Scroll through the gallery below to see construction on the area.

Construction on Ice District Plaza Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018.
Construction on Ice District Plaza Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. Vinesh Pratap, Global News
Construction on Ice District Plaza Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018.
Construction on Ice District Plaza Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. Vinesh Pratap, Global News
Construction on Ice District Plaza Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018.
Construction on Ice District Plaza Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. Vinesh Pratap, Global News
Construction on Ice District Plaza Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018.
Construction on Ice District Plaza Thursday, Sept. 27, 2018. Vinesh Pratap, Global News