Wednesday, August 28, 2013


I'm amazed at how quickly the TransCanada Highway/Dunmore Road overpass is being constructed.  After last year's never-ending Southridge Drive construction, and the ongoing excruciatingly long TransCanada Bridge replacement, I didn't have high hopes for anything happening in a timely manner anywhere in this city.

But I look around and see that many additions and expansions are happening here to better serve our community.  The newly expanded skate park looks great and seem to be getting good use every time I drive by.  The Cultural Centre is in the midst of some much needed renovations and expansion as well.  If you've ever been there during a rainstorm you'll know that buckets had to be set out in various locations to catch the water that ran through the windows, down walls and dripped from ceilings.  We have a new middle school under construction in Southridge, the Dr. Roy Wilson Learning Centre. The long-empty Canadian Tire building on Dunmore Road is seeing significant change as three new businesses prepare to move into it and the addition of Target to the Medicine Hat Mall added some square footage there as well.  I don't get up to Crescent Heights often enough to see what's happening there, but the Northlands area always seems to have new businesses being built.  I love the historical buildings of our beautiful downtown and have high hopes for it's revitalization.  If you haven't noticed, we have a thriving art scene happening down there.  Check it out at the next Art Walk happening on September 27.

Disappointingly, the hospital expansion budget was cut in half from it's original plan, but it continues on schedule, with the promise of better service to Southeastern Alberta upon it's completion (hopefully!).  The police station expansion is ongoing as well.

At some point I assume the expansion to the Family Leisure Centre will begin (if it hasn't already) and eventually the much debated Regional Events Centre will be built.

One of the big projects that DOESN'T seem to be going anywhere is the detox centre.  There seems to be a significant lack of will on the part of Alberta Health Services, Alberta Health and Alberta Infrastructure to work together to see this project happen.  The promise of a centre in three or four years does nothing for the people who need this service now!  I would suggest a call, email or letter to your MLA to tell them about your concern about this neglected project, but I know for a fact that our local MLA's, especially Drew Barnes, have been prodding the government about this since they got into office, so I would say that more to the point would be a message to the offices of Fred Horne, Minister of Health, Wayne Drysdale, Minister of Infrastructure, and Janet Davidson, administrator of Alberta Health Services.

I'm excited about the progress I see in this, the "forgotten corner" of Alberta.  Every addition and expansion to our city shows that we are a growing, thriving community with much to offer our residents and visitors.

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