The City of Cold Lake hosted World Town Planning Day on October 27th, by chartering a city transit bus throughout the city to showcase key developments. The builds that were highlighted on the tour included new 4-Wing Housing, the South Fire Hall, FCSS & Parent Link Building, Tri-City Senior Community and Cold Lake Travel Centre. Cold Lake Planning & Development Coordinators, Tasha Elliot and Joselynn Ratzlaff headed the two hour tour, which was followed with an hour Q&A/networking session at Beantrees Cafe.
Every seat was full as the transit bus made its way across the City, with the first stop at the 4-Wing Housing. The project will see four duplexes, eight units, on the military base. Some interesting take-aways on the housing units, provided by Trevor Beniot, of Value Master Homes Cold Lake Inc, were:
- These are the first new-builds the base has commissioned in 40 years
- Each unit comes with an attached single car garage
- Units have open, modern floorplans
- Homes meet “Energuide 80” requirements, making them the most energy efficient housing on the base
- Units are 1400 square feet, finished main and upper levels with room for development in the basements
The Military Housing Department will be in charge of whom will receive placement at the homes, which will be rented like any other PMQ on the base. The first unit will be ready by early spring 2016. There is no official word if the base has plans for more new builds.
For the second stop, the bus made its way to 16th street, Cold Lake south, where the new fire hall is being constructed just off the busy highway. Andrew Langstone, Krawford Construction, spoke of some of the highlights the facility will have including:
- Five front bay sliding doors, one of only two fire houses in Alberta feature this aesthetically pleasing door. The back five bays will have traditional sliding up doors
- 10 equipment bays, eight for fire rescue, two for EMS
- Living quarters to support future full time fire fighters
- Training tower, which needed special clearance due to the height being in restricted air space
- Emergency Management facility in case of a major catastrophe in the City
And what fire hall would be complete without a pole, Langstone reassured there is a pole in place. The fire hall is scheduled to be operational for spring 2016. *In development- More on the Cold Lake South Fire Hall build & progress, check back at lakelandconnect.net.*
The transit bus, which is new to Cold Lake, then made a stop at the FCSS & Parent Link Building. The new facility is a highlight of any City tour, and must be seen from the inside. Passengers departed the bus and were greeted by FCSS Director, Cathy Aust who gave a tour of the many services offered; which included:
- Hotel Offices for out of town facilitators or case workers to have private working or interview areas
- Two classrooms, which are used daily for various community studies
- A fully functional teaching kitchen, which workers at FCSS can also use to prepare their personal meals
- A large Kids Zone with a huge climbing structure – Families are able to use the facility free of charge- the centre sees up to 150 kids on any given day
- Free resource library and toy centre. Community members are welcome to a wide assortment of free books and toys
The FCSS & Parent Link Centre offers programming throughout the year (many free of charge). Their calendar is available online coldlake.com or at the centre. A new program will be released in December for 2016.
Passengers loaded the bus and headed to the Tri-City Senior Community. The highly-anticipated build is located at an ideal location on 69th avenue in Cold Lake behind Shopper’s Drug Mart and the Mall area of the City. Randy Meise, of Tri-City Holdings, spoke of the high demand for the project, which will have some unique qualities:
- Ground level buildings, no stairs, no basements
- Heated indoor parking with direct access to suites
- Social area to be used as a meeting and gathering place; gaming rooms, and events
- Each unit will have a backyard
Tenants of the community will be over 55 years of age and will have easy access to amenities and parks. The project is expected to be complete in the spring of 2016 with units available for rent or sale by the fall of 2016.
The last building site was at the intersection of Highway 28 (16th avenue) and Highway 55, the future home of Cold Lake Travel Centre. The project, which is yet to break ground, was described to the group by Miles Davis, a Real Estate Developer. There will be many commercial businesses and features at the Travel Centre, including:
- Esso Gas Station and convenience store
- Pizza 73 first Cold Lake location
- Solo Liquor, the largest independent liquor chain in Alberta
- There are negotiations in the works to bring a hotel to the site
- Large parking, perfect for RVs, trailers, large vehicles, semis, and boats
Future plans for the travel centre include office space, additional restaurants or CRU pads. The facility will be built on 1.3 acres and will further connect Cold Lake North to Cold Lake South.
The tour wrapped up at Beantrees Cafe in downtown Cold Lake, where the tourist were able to mingle with the planners and builders and discover more about the projects. Mayor Craig Copeland was in attendance at the meet and greet, as well as, City Chief Administrative Officer, Kevin Nagoya, General Manager of Cold Lake’s Planning & Development, Harword Pinnock, and City Strategic Initiatives Manager, Andrew Serba.
Mayor Craig Copeland spoke of the importance of World City Planning Day, as well as, the City of Cold Lake’s vision to build and improve services for its residents.