#OurDowntown

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Downtown Lethbridge

#OurDowntown is an opportunity to highlight and share information on the revitalization efforts in Downtown Lethbridge as well as an opportunity for the public to participate in an ongoing conversation by contributing with comments, questions, ideas, and suggestions on social media with#OurDowntown or by contributing to this Get Involved Lethbridge conversation as opportunities arise.

#OurDowntown is an opportunity to highlight and share information on the revitalization efforts in Downtown Lethbridge as well as an opportunity for the public to participate in an ongoing conversation by contributing with comments, questions, ideas, and suggestions on social media with#OurDowntown or by contributing to this Get Involved Lethbridge conversation as opportunities arise.

  • Council approves six targeted redevelopment incentive projects (TRIP)

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    Actively encouraging the development and diversification of the local economy continues to be a priority for Lethbridge City Council.

    On Tuesday, during its regular meeting, Council voted to approve six Targeted Redevelopment Incentive Program (TRIP) applications – which collectively, along with three previous approvals, will have an estimated return on investment (ROI) of:

    • $14 million in construction value
    • Increase from a base assessment of $6.2 million to $14.6 million at completion (+136 per cent)
    • $3.2 million in net increase in municipal taxes from the redeveloped properties over 20 years

    TRIP promotes new construction or major renovation of medium- to large-scale commercial, retail and mixed-use building projects that generate significant and ongoing expansion to the assessment base in the urban core. TRIP includes a tax cancellation of the municipal portion of the taxes based on the increased assessed value due to construction for a pre-determined amount of years which is based on the construction value of the project.

    TRIP is one of three incentives that make up the Urban Core Incentive Program, focused on redevelopment and revitalization of the urban core, which includes Downtown Lethbridge, the Warehouse District and 13 Street North.

    "When strategically developed, development-based grants and incentives have proven to be an effective tool in economic development in key strategic areas to yield in community return on investment," says Andrew Malcolm, Urban Revitalization Manager. "I commend Council for these approvals and look forward to seeing the vibrancy these projects will help create."

    "These redevelopment projects and TRIP are great ways to stimulate economic prosperity and diversification, while also having an impactful long-term positive return on investment," says Mayor Blaine Hyggen.

    To date, City Council has approved four TRIP projects (three tax-based and one grant-based) for an estimated total tax cancellation of $830,000 during the next seven years. In approving all six of the applications Tuesday, the estimated total tax cancellation raises to an estimated $1.3 million during the next seven years, while, again, providing an estimated $3.2 million in net increase in municipal taxes from the redeveloped properties across 20 years.

    The six projects approved on Tuesday include:

    • 622 3 Avenue South. Foster and Sons Jewelry repositioned its main entrance to face the reconstructed 3rd Avenue. The interior has been completely overhauled with new finishes and barrier-free accessibility improvements have been incorporated
    • 507 6 Avenue South. A complete exterior facade upgrade, as well as structural improvements to support a second floor residential addition with rooftop balcony, for an existing downtown commercial building with several retail spaces
    • 321 8 Street South. Redevelopment of a downtown retail property, vacant for the past five years, into a commercial office space for a local real estate brokerage. Renovation will include new offices, new finishes, new barrier-free washrooms and a facade renovation to rejuvenate the aging exterior
    • 702 3 Avenue South. Modernization and redevelopment of the former Scotiabank building, which has been vacant for nearly 10 years. Redevelopment will result in a building with adequate ventilation, restored exterior facade, modernization of mechanical and electrical systems, increase of usable floor space by extension of second floor system and an increase of accessibility
    • 319 6 Street South. A complete redevelopment of an existing commercial retail and office building into a full new service restaurant and bar, including structural stabilization to support a rooftop patio
    • 1004 1 Avenue South. A complete redevelopment of an existing commercial/warehouse building in the Warehouse District neighbourhood into a fitness facility with mixed-martial arts, yoga and workout room. Extensive improvements were needed to meet current code including new roof, structural improvements, mechanical and electrical systems and accessibility improvements


    Check out the following video to hear more directly from applicants on how impactful these incentive programs have been.


  • New City partnership says "Oki" to six community organizations

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    The City of Lethbridge has partnered with six organizations within the community to continue the celebration of Blackfoot culture and the City’s official greeting, Oki.

    In 2019, the City of Lethbridge, Heart of Our City Committee (HOC) and the Reconciliation Lethbridge Advisory Committee (RLAC) partnered to develop an Oki sign as part of the celebration of the United Nations International Year of Indigenous Languages and the adoption of Oki as the official greeting of the City of Lethbridge. Since then, the City’s two Oki signs have been seen throughout the community at special events and celebrations.

    “Looking back to where this started as a partnership with RLAC and HOC, the main outcome was creating opportunity for community connection to our urban core, in particular our public places,” says the City’s Urban Revitalization Manager, Andrew Malcolm. “Something that draws community in, allows organizations and business to know they are part of something special, and that all residents feel welcome, safe and proud to be part of it.”

    Based on the success of the initiative, various community partners came forward and expressed interest in having their own Oki signs. Over the past several months, the City has been working with this group of partners on the continuation of the community-wide placemaking project. The six new signs have been commissioned to feature individual bespoke Indigenous artwork. The signs will be hosted by the following partner organizations;

    • Primaris (Park Place Mall),
    • The University of Lethbridge,
    • Galt Museum and Archives,
    • Lethbridge Public Library,
    • Allied Arts Council and
    • Lethbridge and District Exhibition

    The purpose of this continued initiative is to celebrate Blackfoot culture and language across the community and to celebrate the important role that Oki has come to play in our community as a symbol of respect, understanding and reconciliation – and the hallmark of Sikóóhkotok (Lethbridge). Community members and visitors are encouraged to seek out the new Oki signs and engage with each of them in their new locations across the City.

    The total budget for this project was $75,000 with partners contributing approximately 53 per cent of the funds. City funding was cost-shared between the Opportunity Lethbridge and Indigenous Relations departments and approved in the previous Capital Improvement Plan operating budget.

    A selection committee comprised of the partner organizations and facilitated by the City’s Public Art Program, met and selected six pieces of art by Indigenous artists in August 2022.

    “We at the Galt Museum & Archives / Akaisamitohkanao’pa are incredibly honoured to host and showcase an Oki sign designed by Api’soomaahka (William Singer III). As a gathering place for all, the opportunity to connect the land with its people is incredibly powerful and meaningful. Building respectful relationships with community members of Indigenous and non-indigenous descent continues to be a priority for the organization. This sign demonstrates our commitment to exploring new and innovative ways in which we work collaboratively with our stakeholders to establish what it means to create a sense of place and belonging.”

    • Darrin J Martens, Aaká óóhkotoki (Many rocks), CEO / Executive Director, Galt Museum & Archives /Akaisamitohkanao'pa (eternal gathering place)

    “In keeping with the Library’s mission to be a welcoming, inclusive space that connects and strengthens community through equitable access to learning and leisure, the Library is proud to acknowledge and honour the traditional occupants of this land through the promotion of the Blackfoot language in our spaces. The Oki sign will welcome all who visit the Library in the official greeting of our City, and the traditional language of our territory. The design, provided by local artist Sandra Lamouche, is ideal to represent the Library as a place for everyone living, working or visiting our community. “

    • Terra Plato, CEO, Lethbridge Public Library

    “The Oki Sign project is meaningful because it really brings about reconciliation for Indigenous Peoples here in Lethbridge. It's meaningful not only to myself, but to our families and communities to be acknowledged for the traditional lands of the Blackfoot territory, and it brings us together as a community. It means a lot to our community that Oki is the official welcome to Lethbridge. At the University of Lethbridge, we need to ensure that Indigenous students and staff are equally represented on campus and recognize the knowledge that Indigenous Peoples can bring to these spaces. It means a lot that our students can be on campus and learn our culture and history, and that starts with the Oki sign.”

    • Lindi Shade, Manager of ikaissini-Indigenous Student Centre, U of L

    “I wanted to get involved with this project because I believe that reconciliation through art is so important and the City of Lethbridge is making great strides in this realm through creating opportunities for Indigenous artists to thrive in this new world. My art for these signs reflects connection and history and I hope that those who see it will take the time to learn more about this place called Sikohkiitoki and the first peoples of this land and our shared history.”

    • Cheyenne (Naatoiyiki) McGinnis, Artist

    “As the Allied Arts Council of Lethbridge and Casa continue to move forward with inclusive programming, the Oki Sign project is a meaningful reflection of our internal values and the values we wish to see reflected in our community. Having an Oki sign present at Casa is especially relevant after the recent naming ceremony for the Saokitapi Gallery space, which will be curated by Niitsiitapi artist, educator and researcher Star Crop Eared Wolf over the next five years. As an arts organization, we are honoured to work with Blackfoot artists to create a sign that says welcome as well as serves as a tangible reminder that we offer our programming on the traditional lands of the Blackfoot people.”

    • Suzanne Lint, Executive Director of Allied Arts Council/ casa

    “Lethbridge & District Exhibition is proud to be a gathering place for the Blackfoot community and all Indigenous peoples,” says Mike Warkentin, Chief Executive Officer, Lethbridge & District Exhibition. “Artist Cheyanne McGinnis’ OKI design welcomes our guests, representing the people, the place and the community we exist to serve.”

    • Mike Warkentin, CEO, Lethbridge & District Exhibition

    “Blackfoot heritage has always been an important part of the culture in Southern Alberta. As a gathering hub in our community, we promote diversity and inclusion where everyone is welcome. This new Oki sign is an exciting way that compliments the use of the shopping centre as a platform to educate our guests on the rich heritage of the Blackfoot community, including historical facts about the region and the integration of the Blackfoot language in other areas of the centre.”

    • Kevin Brees, Regional Manager, Operations, Primaris

    City staff, community partners, and artists are celebrating this placemaking project with a soft launch at Park Place mall on September 28 in conjunction with 2022 Reconciliation Week. It is anticipated that the fully wrapped Oki signs will be delivered to their hosts later in the fall.

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  • New Pollinator Cafes Decorate the Downtown

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    Highlighting beauty and biodiversity in downtown planters

    This summer, when you visit a downtown shop, office, or event, you may notice a colourful new collection of flower plantings. These Pollinator Cafés are brimming with annual flowers intentionally selected to provide food and habitat for local pollinators. Infographic signs located in many of these planters will feature a particular type of pollinator and outline the key plant features they are looking for in a food source. Embedded QR codes will link to plant lists you can reference when planning and selecting flowers for your own gardens and planters. The project is the result of a collaboration between several City of Lethbridge departments including Urban Revitalization, Parks, and the Helen Schuler Nature Centre.

    The planters are designed to add vibrancy to the downtown while also offering critical infrastructure for pollinators within our urban ecosystem.

    “Creating the Pollinator Cafés has been a fun way to showcase the different types of pollinators that call Lethbridge home and help keep our gardens and local vegetation healthy and productive,” says Jackie Cardinal, Natural Resource Coordinator for City Parks. “Learning about how we can create beautiful spaces while supporting and enhancing pollinator habitats, large and small, is so important for the health and wellness of our ecosystems and city overall.”

    It is estimated that one in three bites of food is thanks to a pollinator! The variety and abundance of pollinators, also known as biodiversity, are a direct measure of ecosystem health. The addition of more than 40 of these Pollinator Cafés around the downtown will greatly enhance seasonal pollinator habitat and will also help to create a wildlife corridor to connect pollinators between larger parks, green spaces and residential yards.

    “Green infrastructure is a critical part of the overall health of our urban ecosystem and even something as simple as choosing a flower for your planters can have a huge impact,” says Coreen Putman, Manager of the Helen Schuler Nature Centre. “Local pollinators have specific adaptations that require a particular shape, colour and seasonality of flowers. We’ve created these signs as a resource to inform members of the community about these distinctions and hopefully to also empower them to make informed choices when planning their garden.”

    If you have recently visited the downtown you may have noticed more trees, shrubs and flowers. This green infrastructure is part of an ongoing effort to enhance the health, vitality and growth of the downtown as part of the ongoing implementation of the Heart of Our City Master Plan. The plan, created in 2007, includes objectives around being a sustainable downtown that is beautifully landscaped with appropriate species reflecting the unique characteristics of this bioregion. Projects like the newly renovated 3rd Avenue corridor and corresponding Pollinator Cafés showcase these efforts to incorporate more permanent and seasonal vegetation to the downtown for the benefit of human and non-human users alike.

    “The ultimate goal of urban revitalization is to create a sense of place where people and activities want to be,” says Andrew Malcolm, Urban Revitalization Manager of the City of Lethbridge. “This project is another way we can work to create a beautiful, inviting and engaging atmosphere for residents and visitors to enjoy. Add in the fact that it is also helping the environment and it really is a win-win.”

    If you are interested in learning more about ways in which you can support pollinators in Lethbridge, contact the Helen Schuler Nature Centre at hsnc@lethbridge.ca or 403-320-3064.

  • Things will be great when you’re Downtown

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    The arrival of the Labour Day weekend means the unofficial end of summer. It can, however, also be a time to look back at a summertime that featured a full return of happening events in Downtown Lethbridge.

    An exciting range of activities have been hosted Downtown for the past several months, many of which had financial support through the City of Lethbridge, Opportunity Lethbridge, with the support of the Heart of Our City Committee (HOCC) through the Re-Imagine Downtown Activation Grant.

    In late June, the new Festival Square opened and has already hosted nearly 25 bookings, not including the weekly Downtown Farmers' Market. The hugely successful Patios and Parklets has continued this summer, while the first Whoop-Up Days parade since 2019 returned to the streets of Downtown Lethbridge last week, which highlighted the significant improvements along 3 Avenue.

    "We have been thrilled at the overall level of interest and the full return of events has been a great opportunity to continue enhancing and revitalizing Downtown Lethbridge," says Andrew Malcolm, Urban Revitalization Manager.


    "Festival Square offers the Downtown and broader community a beautiful place in which to gather and celebrate," says Sarah Amies, Community Director for the Downtown Lethbridge Business Revitalization Zone. "The Lethbridge BRZ is delighted with the activation of and general interest in the space thus far and is busily planning winter season activities for all to enjoy."

    Some of the new or returning events in Downtown Lethbridge for 2022 include:

    • Artcade
    • Arts In The Park
    • Centric MusicFest Pop-up Concerts
    • Downtown Farmers' Market
    • Downtown Roller Jam with Roller Skate Lethbridge
    • First Friday Lunch & Listen Concert Series
    • Foodie Fest
    • The Gate Church's Summer Fam Jam
    • Horses in the Park from the Lethbridge Therapeutic Riding Association
    • History and Beer Tour
    • Hootenanny
    • Lethbridge ArtDays
    • Lethbridge Electronic Music Festival
    • Lethbridge Jazz Festival
    • Lethbridge Pride Festival & Parade
    • Outdoor Viewing Party of Amazing Race Canada, in partnership with Tourism Lethbridge
    • Outdoor Viewing party for NHL playoffs Battle of Alberta Game 4 in the Core
    • Oktoberfest YQL (which, after several years at Exhibition Park, will return to Downtown Lethbridge at Festival Square September 9 and 10)
    • Pop Up Yoga
    • Shakespeare In The Park
    • Street Machine Weekend
    • Upside Downtown concert and art series at Rotary Square outside Casa
    • Wide Skies Festival

    "Presenting events in Downtown Lethbridge has always been very important to The Geomatic Attic," says Mike Spencer, Director of The Geomatic Attic. "Our Wide Skies Music Festival was created in 2017 with one of the main goals being to celebrate and bring people to our beautiful inner core locations. In summer 2022, Wide Skies once again highlighted big talent touring musicians at unique venues, with shows at the top level of the City of Lethbridge Regional Park 'n' Ride Transit Terminal and then at the Sandman Signature Lethbridge Lodge parking lot."

    Safety is a top priority for everyone and a concerted effort has been ongoing to add more people and activities to public spaces in Downtown Lethbridge. By having increased numbers of people visible in our public spaces, it discourages negative behaviours and increases the sense of safety and community. The Watch Program, Galt Gardens Security, the Clean Sweep Program and Parks Maintenance all continue to work together to create a safe play space for families.

    "All of these events and activities generate extra foot traffic and have a collective positive economic impact for many of the small- and medium-sized businesses who call Downtown home, says Malcolm. "We look forward to more announcements for the winter months and, of course, into summer 2023."

    Through the Heart of Our City committee and the Urban Revitalization Department, numerous programs and incentives are available to provide financial assistance that will continue to stimulate growth and development in the Downtown. More information here: https://www.lethbridge.ca/living-here/Downtown/Pages/Incentives-Programs.aspx

    More information on Downtown Lethbridge can be found here: https://www.lethbridge.ca/living-here/Downtown/Pages/default.aspx and at https://www.downtownlethbridge.com/




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  • City awarded $375,000 from Federal Government’s Canada Community Revitalization Fund for new play space in Galt Gardens

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    The City of Lethbridge has been successful in securing $375,000 in grant funding through the Government of Canada’s Community Revitalization Fund (CCRF) to construct a new Inclusive and Accessible Play Space in Galt Gardens that will add to community vibrancy and the vitality of downtown by fostering active, social, educational, inclusive and accessible play opportunities.


    The CCRF is a two-year $500 million national infrastructure program meant to support communities across the country with projects that revitalize downtown cores and main streets, reinvent outdoor spaces, create green infrastructure and address accessibility of community space. PrairiesCan is administering the CCRF in Alberta.

    Leveraging the exciting synergies created between Casa, Rotary Fountain, 3 Avenue Reconstruction, Festival Square, and the pending SAAG expansion; the play space will act as a catalyst to attract residents and tourists to the core, support local shopping, enhance children’s programming of the adjacent Southern Alberta Art Gallery and Casa, and address a notable gap in recreation and play opportunities within a 10-minute walking distance of Downtown Lethbridge.

    The project has an approved budget of $500,000 – 75 per cent of which ($375,000) is being funded by the CCRF grant. Lethbridge City Council approved the additional 25 per cent ($125,000) within Urban Core Public Realm Enhancements D-20 in the 2022-2031 Capital Improvement Program.

    “This addition to a concentrated nucleus of redevelopment and vibrancy we are developing in the heart of Downtown Lethbridge is a great step forward to helping the public perception,” says Andrew Malcolm, Urban Revitalization Manager. “Galt Gardens is the ‘Central Park’ of Lethbridge and is the primary downtown festival and events park in the city. We are thrilled for this funding to help provide a new daily use option that will bring enjoyment and fun to this important downtown park.”

    “Our government is making investments that transform public infrastructure into modern gathering places for residents and visitors of all ages through the Canada Community Revitalization Fund,” said the Honourable Daniel Vandal, Minister for PrairiesCan. “Today’s support to revitalize Galt Gardens in Lethbridge will help create an inclusive and accessible community space where everyone can gather and enjoy outdoor activities.”

    “Parks and public spaces across Alberta communities bring people together, attract visitors to downtown cores and help support countless small businesses,” said the Honourable Randy Boissonnault, Minister of Tourism and Associate Minister of Finance. “Today’s investment in Galt Gardens will help support recovery in Lethbridge by creating more jobs and provide opportunities for residents and visitors to benefit from the local businesses and attractions that are at the heart of this community.”

    A community advisory committee, which includes representation from the Heart of Our City Committee, the Downtown BRZ, Casa, SAAG, Lethbridge Plays, and the Rotary Club of Lethbridge, have been consulted for initial design ideas. Detailed design is underway, to be then followed by construction this summer and fall, with an opening date of Spring 2023.

    Media Contact:
    media@lethbridge.ca

  • Re-Imagine Downtown Activation Grants poised for busy 2022

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    Downtown Lethbridge is ready to host the return of several events this year – as well as set the stage and opportunity for a slate of new activation initiatives.

    Through a combination of Re-Imagine Downtown Activation initiatives approved in fall 2021, and those to be approved in the coming weeks through the grant’s latest intake period, 2022 is shaping up to be a busy time for events Downtown.

    The total funding available for the Re-Imagine Downtown Activation Grant in 2022 is up to $150,000. Applications are eligible for up to $25,000, with funding provided through the Downtown Redevelopment Fund. The current intake period of applications has been extended until April 22 to give more time for those interested to get their applications submitted.

    The Re-Imagine Downtown Activation Grant originated in 2021 through the Heart of Our City Committee (HOCC) re-imagining the former Activity Grant program in order to enhance vibrancy Downtown in the context of pandemic and post-pandemic realities. The funding aims to support businesses, entrepreneurs, organizations and community-minded individuals in implementing initiatives, events, and/or programs that seek to activate vacant, underutilized and under programmed private and public spaces and places within Downtown Lethbridge.

    “As we saw with the launch of Re-Imagine in 2021, there are several great projects that can happen with the right support in place,” says Andrew Malcolm, Urban Revitalization Manager. “During intake 2, we received 15 applications with funding requests totaling in excess of $250,000. Although we did not have adequate funds to meet the demand, this is a great sign for overall interest in the future of Downtown Lethbridge.”

    “We are thrilled at the continued interest this program has received and we look forward to more events in 2022,” says HOCC Chair Lorien Johansen.

    Through the evaluative process in this second intake of applications, the review panel and the HOCC prioritized grant funding based on the criteria identified in the application package, with several projects partially or fully funded including:

    • NineBar Indoor Skate Facility and Summer Downtown Pop-Up Skate Park - $25,000
      • Transformation of an existing vacant downtown space into an indoor space for youth to skateboard, which will provide a year-round, safe space for them to exercise and find community. Additionally, a pop-up skate parks in specified locations downtown with movable features during the summer months.
    • Horses in the Park - $15,000
      • The Lethbridge Therapeutic Riding Association will bring therapeutic horses to Galt Gardens to provide the benefits of quine facilitated wellness therapies in the core and to create an environment through interaction with horses for vulnerable people to connect meaningfully with existing medical and social service providers working to address issues of homelessness, addiction and mental health.
    • Lethbridge Pride Festival 2022 - $8,000
      • To be held in June 2022 to engage not only the 2SLGBTQIA+ but Lethbridge and surrounding areas in celebration.
    • Word on the Street Festival - $8,000
      • An outdoor literary event comprised of author readings for kids, teens and adults, workshops and panels, live music and activities, and exhibitor marketplace, in a street fair setting
    • Hootenanny! - $8,000
      • A free outdoor theatrical production for all ages presented in downtown Lethbridge at Galt Gardens throughout July. Hootenanny’s productions include diverse theatrical styles such as clown, puppetry, and physical theatre and embraces themes of inclusivity and diversity. This year’s production's themes will centre around Indigenous ways of knowing and environmental awareness.
    • ARTcade - $5,638
      • The ARTcade concept is meant to bring the interest and joy of everyone’s favourite midway and arcade games to Lethbridge’s downtown. ‘Scaled-up’ versions of classic games like skee ball and plinko will bring interest and curiosity to the downtown, including the outside spaces around CASA and local businesses.
    • Jazz & Blues 2022 Event Series - $5,000
      • Lethbridge Jazz Society is hosting local and national artists in a series of live events in downtown Lethbridge, across a variety of venues.

    Applications are eligible for up to $25,000 with the Re-Imagine Downtown Activation Grant. The third of four intakes has been extended to remain open until April 22 at 4 p.m. The HOCC encourages all unsuccessful applicants to reach out to City administration with any questions, concerns, and/or to receive individualized feedback on their application. They are encouraged to reapply in the next intakes. More information is here.

  • Festival Square, 3 Avenue construction set for final construction phases

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    The last development phases of Festival Square, as well as the 3 Avenue South Reconstruction Project between 4 Street and 8 Street in Downtown Lethbridge, are ready to begin starting next week.

    With a target completion date and planned grand opening for both projects in June, weather and supply issues permitting, residents will soon be able to celebrate the completion of these significant new designs. The remaining work includes completion of the Festival Square plaza, the 6 Street intersection at 3 Avenue, concrete crosswalks on 3 Avenue at 5 Street and 7 Street, coloured crosswalk paint at 7 Street, as well as 4 Street intersection curb extensions, line markings and landscaping on the west side of the intersection.

    Work will begin on Tuesday, April 5, weather permitting, with the crosswalks at 7 Street. Following this work will be the 6 Street intersection and the Festival Square Plaza. At these stages, 6 Street will again be closed to vehicle through traffic. Turnarounds will be in place but there will be the ability to exit through the laneways, as they will remain open in order to ease traffic movement concerns. Third Avenue will remain open and parking will still be available nearby.

    Motorists are advised to drive with caution in this area and follow posted detours. Businesses in the area have received additional correspondence.

    The new Festival Square Market Plaza will be a versatile, active and engaging public space for people and the local businesses in the area. The main draw will be its offering as a year-round permanent market space with supporting infrastructure to support local producers, artisans, and craftspeople a place to sell their wares year-round. The project includes an interactive stage, entry signs, decorative column lighting, programmable lighting and site furniture, as well as water/wastewater servicing and lane rehab.

    In July 2021, Lethbridge City Council voted 6-3 to proceed with a revised plan for Municipal Stimulus Program (MSP) funded projects which include the $1.71 million Festival Square Market Plaza, allowing Festival Square to proceed – without any City funding – to ensure that the project is delivered as an economic catalyst for downtown. The revised completion date will not impact the grant funding. Full background here: https://www.lethbridge.ca/NewsCentre/Pages/Council-greenlights-revisions-to-Municipal-Stimulus-Program-projects.aspx

  • Businesses can benefit from new Downtown parking payment option

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    Businesses in Downtown Lethbridge now have a way to better serve their customers as the City of Lethbridge is introducing a new and convenient option to pay for their customers’ parking without having to use the app or leave their desk, work station or appointment.

    The new “Business Add Time to Plate” program will allow businesses to create an account with the City of Lethbridge and have parking time loaded into their account – and then the business can distribute those minutes to cover the costs of parking for their customers.

    By providing another user-friendly option in addition to coins, credit cards, parking cards and the WayToPark app, the goal is to make paying for parking as simple as possible.

    The payment process for the Business Add Time to Plate” will happen in real time – so when the business pays for the customer’s parking, that information is immediately sent to the enforcement officers to prevent a violation from being issued.

    Interested business can contact 311 to reach the Transportation department to learn more. A City representative will set up an appointment and come to them to assist with account creation and payment collection.

  • Festival Square Market Plaza - Construction Update (Dec 2021)

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    Festival Square Construction Paused for Winter

    Once concrete work is completed this week at Festival Square on 6 Street South, just off 3 Avenue, construction on the project will cease until the spring.

    The portion of 6 Street between 3 Avenue and 4 Avenue is still closed to vehicle traffic, as the new concrete needs time to cure. It is anticipated that this stretch of road, as well as the adjacent laneway, will temporarily reopen by early January until construction can resume in the spring.

    Construction fencing will be moved from the road and laneway but will remain around the plaza component.

    With a June 2022 target date for construction completion, as well as a potential grand opening, the new Festival Square Market Plaza will be a versatile, active and engaging public space for people and the local businesses in the area. The main draw will be its offering as a year-round permanent market space with supporting infrastructure to support local producers, artisans, and craftspeople a place to sell their wares year-round. The project includes an interactive stage, entry signs, decorative column lighting, programmable lighting and site furniture, as well as water/wastewater servicing and lane rehab.

    More information here: https://getinvolvedlethbridge.ca/ourdowntown

    In July 2021, Lethbridge City Council voted 6-3 to proceed with a revised plan for Municipal Stimulus Program (MSP) funded projects which include the $1.71 million Festival Square Market Plaza, allowing Festival Square to proceed – without any City funding – to ensure that the project is delivered as an economic catalyst for downtown. The revised completion date will not impact the grant funding.

    Full background here: https://www.lethbridge.ca/NewsCentre/Pages/Council-greenlights-revisions-to-Municipal-Stimulus-Program-projects.aspx

    Third Avenue South between 4 Street and 8 Street in Downtown Lethbridge recently re-opened to vehicle traffic. That Reconstruction Project is nearing overall completion, with some minor work remaining to be done in spring 2022.

    Motorists are advised to drive with caution in this area and follow posted detours.

    Construction Photos


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  • Second Intake for Re-imagine Downtown Activation Grants Still Open

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    With $90,000 supporting 11 initiatives during the first intake this past summer, including music festivals and business recruitment projects, the Re-Imagine Downtown Activation Grant program got off to a successful start in 2021.

    As the Heart of Our City Committee (HOCC) continues to be proactive with Downtown vibrancy, there is still time for more as autumn has set in. The total remaining funding for the second intake of the Re-Imagine Downtown Activation Grant in 2021 is $60,000, with applications eligible for up to $25,000.

    Announced in late May, the grant money aims to support businesses, entrepreneurs, organizations and community-minded individuals in implementing initiatives, events, and/or programs that seek to activate vacant, underutilized and under programmed private and public spaces and places within Downtown Lethbridge.

    Funding is provided through the Downtown Redevelopment Fund’s unutilized contributions to the previous HOCC Activity Grant, which was temporarily suspended in 2020 with the continual changes to public health restrictions severely impacting the ability to plan for events and festivals in the Downtown – which support vibrancy, safety and economic stimulus for local businesses.

    “The first 11 initiatives collectively provided a great boost to our Downtown through the summer months,” says HOCC Chair, Lorien Johansen. “We look forward to seeing more creative ideas to safely encourage people back into the vacant and underutilized spaces of Downtown.”

    The second intake of new grant applications was set to close on October 1, but has been extended to November 1 at 4 p.m. Applications will be evaluated and awarded by the HOCC and all successful applicants will be required to meet and adapt to applicable COVID-19 restrictions in effect at time of initiative.

    More information and the application form can be found here: lethbridge.ca/downtownincentives.

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Page last updated: 13 Oct 2022, 09:32 AM