Somehow I can hear an eerie sound; the echo of a message that comes from the far, far south. It is scary. Are we living in isolation? Are we going to become a self sustaining community where we can improve, make St. Albert great again in spite of being surrounded by the rest of Alberta.
When we came here over 35 years ago there were almost 30,000 people living here. It seemed like a small friendly community where we could live, bring up our young family. From this city every day my husband commuted into Edmonton to work, like the majority of people who lived here. My belief is that this is still happening – or are those people just driving down daily to Edmonton for the fun of it. Back then after a couple of years the boom went bust – we lost everything but somehow kept living in St. Albert.
Today this is happening for a lot of people. People are feeling the pinch, not penny pinching. If you have lost your job, if you have ever lived through hard times, like many seniors have, you will realize that frivolous and grandiose gestures by our city is a cause of great distress, especially when what we are doing is trying to emulate the capital.
I must sound like a broken record but the writing is on the wall – the provincial government is determined to make us part of the capital region. We now have a new Edmonton Metro group that will continue to develop the Edmonton region. This means that we will have to work together with the other satellite towns and cities in the region. I am sure that money will be allocated in a different way; perhaps how we administrate will be changed.
So when we elect our new council let us remember that we are part of the capital region and find out how candidates see our development in Greater Edmonton. This is the future, not laying blame on councillors if our particular interest group does not get what it wants. Let us see the big picture, take the blinkers off and really see where we are going.
Elizabeth Allchin, St. Albert