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Calgary

New Fairview Pump Track is the First of its Kind in Calgary

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The Calgary community of Fairview, located in the southeast, is now home to the city’s very first asphalt pump track

Pump tracks, designed for everything from mountain bikes to skateboards, are popular all over the world. “They provide a playground for kids and adults alike, from beginners to professionals, a pump track provides a community with sustainable and fun packed activity for all.” (1)

The project began in 2018 as a way to take advantage of a prime piece of vacant park space in the center of the established Fairview community. Located at 7800 Flint Rd SE, next to an off-leash park and a children’s playground, the pump track is now a unique component of this well-trafficked area overlooking the city. “Fairview has a few wonderful playgrounds,” says Sam Koots, Fairview Community Association Board Director, “so this is a great amenity for older kids, something they can do once they age out of those parks.” 

A number of charitable partners and local businesses contributed significant funds to the development of the park, and Koots says the community fundraising aspect was quite monumental as well. “There were a lot of recognizable names on the donor list,” he says, “the Fairview community really came together to get this built.” 

Construction officially began on the track in September 2019. After being derailed slightly by the harsh winter, construction resumed in May 2020 and the pump track had its official soft opening on July 17, 2020. Since the fence has come down, the track has quickly evolved into a popular activity destination and social hub, becoming a huge hit with residents of the community and beyond. “It has been crazy busy,” says Koots, “people have come from as far as Acme to check it out.” A typical day at the park sees everything from young children with their parents to grown adults riding bikes and skateboards, all taking turns barreling around the track for hours on end. 


Photo Credit – Calgary Association of Skateboard Enthusiasts (CASE)

Koots says plans for a grand opening to officially announce and celebrate the launch of the track are in motion, but with COVID-19 still a dominant concern, it’s difficult to determine precisely when that will take place. 

Until then, The Fairview Community Association encourages participants to take advantage of this exciting new community asset and keep riding. To ensure all members of the community and beyond can continue enjoying and accessing the track, the Community Association also encourages riders to take their bikes and boards to the track as much as possible, as opposed to driving, to avoid congestion in the back alleys. 

To learn more about the Fairview Pump Track, visit http://fairviewcommunity.ca/pumptrack

 

For more stories, visit Todayville Calgary.

Alberta

‘Boiling point’: Alberta doctors warn of health system collapse as COVID cases climb

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CALGARY — Alberta’s health-care system is on the verge of collapse, warns a group of physicians who are pleading with the government to strengthen public health measures to fend off a relentless fourth wave of COVID-19.

Dr. Shazma Mithani, an emergency room physician in Edmonton, said a staffing crisis, overwhelmed intensive care units and mixed messaging from the province has created a “dire” situation.

Her biggest fear, she said, is that doctors will need to triage patients should hospitalizations continue to mount.

“We don’t want to have to make these decisions where we’re choosing who gets to have (intensive) care or not. And we’re getting closer and closer to that every day,” Mithani said in an interview.

Alberta Health Services, the province’s health-care provider, said in a statement Wednesday there were 258 intensive care beds in the province, which includes 85 added spaces. It said intensive care unit capacity sat at 87 per cent — just slightly below a seven-day average of 91 per cent.

Mithani said the government needs to listen to frontline health-care workers and implement stronger public health restrictions to prevent the health system from crumbling.

“This is much, much worse than I think people understand,” she said. “We, as health-care workers, are telling you that things are very dire, that ICU beds are running out, that we are stretched very thin in terms of our hospital capacity.”

On Friday, the Government of Alberta reinstated an indoor mask mandate for public spaces and an alcohol sales curfew at 10 p.m. It also announced a $100 incentive for unvaccinated Albertans who get their shots in response to an intensifying crisis.

Dr. Ilan Schwartz, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Alberta, said those efforts are “all but meaningless.”

“They are worse than doing nothing at all because now it is going to delay the government from taking more definitive action,” Schwartz said during a panel discussion Wednesday with advocacy group Protect Our Province.

Dr. Darren Markland, an intensive care physician in Edmonton who was also on the panel, said the government should consider vaccine passports and a circuit-breaker lockdown, which is a tight set of restrictions for a limited amount of time to curb ongoing transmission of COVID-19.

Relying solely on vaccinations won’t reign in a growing fourth wave driven by the highly contagious Delta variant, added Mithani.

It takes at least six weeks for people to build full immunity against COVID-19 because vaccine shots need to be separated by a month and then allow another two weeks to develop protection.

In the meantime, there are no signs COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are slowing. There were 647 Albertans in hospital Wednesday due to COVID-19, with 147 of those patients in intensive care. Hospitalizations jumped by 7.5 per cent from Tuesday. Another 18 people died in a 24-hour period.

The doctors with Protect Our Province said there are risks related to government inaction. Those risks, they said, include reduced health-care access for Albertans and increased burnout among health-care professionals.

Alberta Health Services announced late Wednesday that all scheduled, elective surgeries and outpatient procedures in the Calgary Zone have been postponed for the rest of the week. It said on social media the move was necessary to deploy qualified staff to intensive and critical care units.

“The situation really has come to a boiling point,” said Schwartz.

“It’s going to be a while before the premier and the chief medical officer of health will be willing to step back and accept that these actions have failed to immediately curb transmission and by that point, we’re going to be in dire, dire trouble.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 9, 2021.

Alanna Smith, The Canadian Press

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Alberta

Enbridge advances Gulf Coast strategy with US$3B Moda Midstream purchase

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CALGARY — Enbridge Inc. has signed a US$3-billion deal to purchase a U.S.-based terminal and logistics company.

The Canadian pipeline giant says it will buy Moda Midstream Operating LLC from private-equity firm EnCap Flatrock Midstream.

As part of the deal, Enbridge will acquire the Ingleside Energy Center located near Corpus Christi, Texas.

Ingleside is North America’s largest crude export terminal. It loaded 25 per cent of all U.S. Gulf Coast crude exports in 2020.

The deal also gives Enbridge access to other crude export assets in the Gulf Coast region, including the Cactus II Pipeline, the Viola Pipeline and the Taft terminal.

Enbridge says the purchase will advance its U.S. Gulf Coast export strategy. It says the deal is expected to close in the fourth quarter and will immediately add to the company’s earnings.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 7, 2021.

Companies in this story: (TSX:ENB)

The Canadian Press

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