Opinion

Gasoline Alley leaps while the city of Red Deer sleeps.

The City of Red Deer lost about 1,000 residents last year. Some will suggest the greatest beneficiary of our outward migration was Blackfalds which increased by 700, then Penhold and Sylvan Lake.
Now comes huge plans for Gasoline Alley, new accesses, new traffic circles, 200 assisted living homes and something like 800 new homes. Will Red Deer now see their population decrease more with the migration of residents to Gasoline Alley?
We have seen big box stores like Princess Auto leave the city recently along with Greyhound Bus, add in the accounting firms, businesses, dealers, stores, hotels, restaurants, that could have been within city limits, but are operating in gasoline alley and paying county taxes, and residents could be next.
I read in an article that the Red Deer County gets 3 times as much tax revenue from Gasoline Alley as from all the agricultural land in the county. That is before this major expansion.
Gasoline Alley is along Hwy 2 south of 32 Street and it is siphoning money out of Red Deer. Why not learn from their successes and emulate it on the north side of Red Deer. Why not build a gasoline alley along Hwy 2 north of Hwy 11a?
We have something that Gasoline Alley does not have, Hazlett Lake. The city is talking about building an Aquatic Centre. What could be more appealing than an Aquatic Centre with a lake? Attracting stores, restaurants, hotels, gas stations, tourism industries and residents.
Hwy 2 is one of the busiest highways in the country, and Hazlett Lake is Red Deer’s largest lake and is highly visible from Hwy 2. Hazlett Lake could be a destination more popular than Gasoline Alley. Red Deer could get the tax revenue.
A little birdie suggests that our city is on a downward trend and is in survival mode. Hazlett Lake will be hidden behind industrial buildings, and forgotten except by a few hikers walking around in the area. It is too big a project for the city, it would require planning, some thought, perhaps a vision, but most of all it would detract from downtown.
So it is suggested that I forget about the potential commerce, the tourist dollars, the elevation of Red Deer from a shrinking town to a growing city. We should not learn how Lethbridge turned a man made slough into Henderson Park and became the 5th fastest growing city in Canada, but what do they know? Gasoline Alley is growing by leaps and bounds, but what do they know?
Blackfalds, Penhold, Sylvan Lake, Gasoline Alley, and Lethbridge are all growing while Red Deer shrank but again, what do they know? They all saw opportunities when they knocked and they were rewarded with growth, while Red Deer looked inward, ignoring the potential in Hazlett Lake, and said good bye to 975 more residents last year than they welcomed.
Perhaps it is time that the city woke up, stop blaming the province, the economy, the energy sector and looked for the opportunity sitting at their feet. Wake up, ok?



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august

tue13jun - 14sepjun 1311:30 amsep 14Live Music On The Ross Street Patio!(june 13) 11:30 am - (september 14) 6:30 pm MST Ross Street Patio

wed14jun - 15sepjun 1411:30 amsep 15Live Music On The Alexander Way Parklet!(june 14) 11:30 am - (september 15) 1:00 pm MST Alexander Way Parklet, (4916 48 Street)

wed14jun - 4octjun 143:30 pmoct 4ATB Financial Downtown Market(june 14) 3:30 pm - (october 4) 6:30 pm MST Little Gaetz Avenue, (4902 Gaetz Ave)

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mon21aug - 31All DayVolunteer Recruitment Drive - Cleaning & Maintenance TeamAre you handy with a screwdriver, WD40 or a cleaning rag?(All Day)

mon21aug - 31All DayOur Volunteer Team Rocks! Want to get in on the fun?Do you love interacting with others? (All Day)

Caregiver ConnectionsDrop-In Support Group Begins in SeptemberYear Around Event (2017) MST CMHA Learning Annex, First Red Deer Place 4911 - 51 Street, Suite 400 Red Deer, AB T4N 6V4

Caregiver ConnectionsYear Around Event (2017) MST CMHA Learning Annex, First Red Deer Place 4911 - 51 Street, Suite 400 Red Deer, AB T4N 6V4

september

wed6sep6:00 pm- 10:30 pmHarvest Moon Long Table DinnerLong Table Dinner on C.P. Rail Pedestrian Bridge6:00 pm - 10:30 pm

thu7sep5:00 pm- 7:00 pmRed Deer Judo ClubNew Dojo Grand Opening Celebration!5:00 pm - 7:00 pm

fri8sep - 10sep 85:00 pmsep 1010th Annual Red Deer Fall Finale Collector Car Auction5:00 pm - 5:00 pm (10)

wed13sep - 14All DayRed Deer Oil & Gas Show(All Day)

thu14sep12:00 pm- 1:30 pmUnited Way 2017 Annual Kick-Off Luncheon12:00 pm - 1:30 pm

fri15sep - 16sep 156:00 pmsep 16The Grand GalaAn evening filled with wonder and amazement!6:00 pm - 12:00 am (16)

sat16sep - 17sep 169:00 pmsep 17Aviator Shades Coming To Red Deer!9:00 pm - 2:00 am (17) MST The Vat, 5301 43 St, Red Deer, AB T4N 1C8

tue19sep7:00 am- 8:15 amSunrise Toastmasters - Open House!Learn How To Communicate Clearly and Confidently7:00 am - 8:15 am MNT Sunrise Toastmasters Club, 40 Holmes StreetEvent Organized By: Red Deer Sunrise Toastmasters Club

tue19sep7:30 pm- 11:00 pmI Love the 90's Tour!7:30 pm - 11:00 pm mdt Westerner Park

wed27sep - 1octAll DayCanadian Supreme(All Day)

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