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City of Red Deer

Recreation centres back to regular hours October 1 – Includes links to updated schedules

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From the City of Red Deer

City recreation centres to return to regular hours of operation

Starting October 1, the Collicutt Centre and G.H. Dawe Community Centre, will return to regular hours of operation.

In July, The City began a gradual, phased plan to re-open facilities and resume recreation and culture activities and programs, in line with the provincial health orders, restrictions and guidelines. With a better understanding of community demand and our new operating environment, we are able to return to regular hours of operation at the Collicutt Centre and the G.H. Dawe Community Centre.

Set to open September 14, hours at the Recreation Centre will be limited as we monitor and respond to demand. With the opening of the Recreation Centre, hours of operation at the Michener Aquatic Centre will also be modified to provide broad public access to aquatic amenities. Hours for specific facilities are available here.

“This is a significant step forward in our re-opening plans and we are excited to see that citizens and user groups are increasingly using our facilities,” said Barb McKee, Recreation Superintendent. “While we remain focussed on ensuring the health and safety of both users and staff, we are looking forward to increasing access to our facilities, through the change in hours, increased services and our fall programming.”

Citizens can participate in programs and activities in two ways:

  • Activity Reservations – With no drop-in access or classes, all activities must be pre-booked. Everything from lane swimming to walking on the track requires an Activity Reservation – this means customers need to plan ahead and sign up in advance before arriving at a recreation facility. For more information and to pre-book, visit reddeer.ca/reserve. Reservations are available 14 days in advance.
  • Fall programming – Registration for fall programs is open. These are programs that recur for a set period of time (e.g., swimming lessons). Create a custom online Activity Guide to find and register for programs.

Amenities and facilities continue to open. As previously announced, the Recreation Centre will open September 14 for registered programs, facility rentals and Activity Reservation. Also on September 14, fitness areas at the G.H. Dawe Community Centre will be available for use, through Activity Reservations.

Also effective October 1, the temporary discount for facility passes and admission will no longer be available. In early July, entrance fees were temporarily reduced to better reflect reduced hours of operation, service and program offerings.

“As we planned our gradual re-opening of amenities, we knew program and services would initially be limited, which is why we offered a temporary discount,” said McKee. “As we continue to increase our service levels, we also need to return to regular admission rates to ensure sustainability.”

The existing Activity Reservation Pass will not be available for purchase as of October 1. Anyone who purchases an Activity Reservation Pass in September will be offered a prorated credit as of October 1 toward the purchase of a new pass. More information about facility admission rates and passes is available here.

Visitors to recreation facilities are asked to wear a mask when a distance of two metres from others cannot be maintained. Mask wearing during intense, physical activity is not recommended.

After 15 years as a TV reporter with Global and CBC and as news director of RDTV in Red Deer, Duane set out on his own 2008 as a visual storyteller. During this period, he became fascinated with a burgeoning online world and how it could better serve local communities. This fascination led to Todayville, launched in 2016.

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City of Red Deer

City Council paving the way for more house suites, backyard suites, tiny homes, and duplexes

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Council adopts new Zoning Bylaw

At Monday’s regular City Council meeting, City Council passed second and third reading of the Zoning Bylaw 3357/2024, replacing the former Land Use Bylaw.

The goal of the Zoning Bylaw is to reduce red tape, permit more uses in each zone and improve ease and understanding of the document. Notable updates include:

  • Reduction from 11 residential districts to 9 zones
  • Reduction from 7 commercial districts to 6 zones
  • Reduction from 5 industrial districts to 3 zones
  • More permitted uses in each zone
  • More gentle density options to provide increased housing options, including house suites, backyard suites, tiny homes, and duplexes
  • Increased building heights to 12.5m that considers sightlines and privacy of existing dwellings
  • Greater flexibility for development applications
  • Expanded definitions
  • Reduction of duplex side yards, removal of side yard setbacks on corner lots, and reduced frontage in residential narrow lots to improve competitiveness
  • New regulations to gently transition existing neighbourhoods to maintain character

Following adoption of the Zoning Bylaw, the following amendments were made by City Council.

Proposed Amendment Public Hearing Date 
Increase suites from 15% to 25% of the houses in a neighbourhood.   June 24, 2024
Allow commercial uses on the main floor of R-H Residential High Density.   June 24, 2024
Correct errors in the PS Public Service Zone use list: (*Recommended) a) Gaming and Gambling Establishment (Only at the Westerner) b) Education Primary & Secondary – Add to discretionary use list   May 27, 2024
Returning the Cannabis Retail Sales setbacks to be consistent with the current Land Use Bylaw 3357/2006   May 27, 2024

“The new Zoning Bylaw incorporates years of public feedback and best practices to make a Zoning Bylaw that will result in more housing options, easier development, and ultimately will improve our competitiveness,” said David Girardin, Major Projects Planner. “With the approval of the Zoning Bylaw today, we are not finished our community engagement as there will be future public hearings on potential amendments in the coming weeks, as well as more formal public participation for each additional phase of the Zoning Bylaw.”

The Zoning Bylaw will come into effect in 30 days. Public participation for phase two of the Zoning Bylaw will begin later this year. For more information, visit engage.reddeer.ca.

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City of Red Deer

City says Red Deer residents impressed by changes to snow and ice control program

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City Council reviews pilot snow and ice control program

This past winter, The City of Red Deer piloted changes to the snow and ice control program that focused on restoring mobility sooner and providing safe, accessible and well-maintained transportation infrastructure for all.

Major changes included 24/7 operations for residential street clearing, increased traction control throughout the city, additional sidewalk, trail and staircase clearing, and decreased timelines for bus stop clearing. On Monday City Council reviewed the 2023-24 snow and ice control operational report which outlined the pilot’s successes and challenges, as well as the learnings and opportunities for improvement.

“Overall, our more responsive approach to snow and ice control resulted in better mobility for motorists and pedestrians, and a greater quality of winter road maintenance,” said Greg Sikora, Manager of Parks and Public Works. “Of the many successes of the pilot program, the community was most pleased with the noticeable improvement in traction control and our ability to clear Green Routes within six days, thanks to moving Green Route plowing to 24/7 operations.”

Improvements to pedestrian, cyclist and motorist transportation networks include:

  • Increased presence and effectiveness of pre-treating, plowing, and sanding on major arterials, hills and bridges, with two and four-hour traction control equipment cycles,
  • 5 locations of staircase clearing,
  • 43 km of neighbourhood asphalt trails cleared after each snowfall,
  • Inclusion of second side sidewalks (9 km)
  • 635 transit stop clearing: 61 high priority cleared in 1 day, 153 medium priority cleared within 3 days, an additional 421 supplemental stops cleared within 7 days.

Throughout the pilot program, The City connected with the community to get feedback on operations including regular check-ins with the Engaged Citizens Group, two broad public surveys, a transit rider survey and the Citizen Satisfaction Survey.

Overall, citizens felt arterial roadways, hills and bridges were adequately maintained, and were satisfied with the Green Route plowing operation, with little concern raised about nighttime operations and 24/7 parking bans. Residents reported a prominent level of satisfaction with the additional mobility of trails, sidewalks and staircases, and there was improved public awareness of snow clearing programs.

Additionally, a noticeable improvement in adherence to the parking ban resulted in less than 100 tickets being issued this year. Complaint call volumes and service requests for traction control also trended downward this year.

“While we’ve received positive feedback from the community, we know there is always room for improvement. Our greatest challenges to the snow and ice control program remains the variability of weather, pivoting operations from a plow based program to a traction control focus and choosing the right time to execute Green and Grey Route plows,” said Manager Sikora.

In June 2023, Council adopted the revised Integrated and Accessible Transportation Policy (IAATP), which focuses on providing the community with mobility services based on four guiding principles: safe, accessible, well-maintained and accountable.

City Council will consider the future level of service at the May 27 City Council meeting.

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