Timely news and industry updates from the past 30 days. 

January 24, 2020

Reducing red tape for wood-building construction

“Not only will this decision support the forestry industry and land developers, it will provide affordability to home buyers, bolster employment, and give Alberta a competitive advantage. We made this change knowing that mass timber products are safe and that these buildings will meet all necessary standards.”

January 17, 2020

2020 UDI-ER Business Plan

The 2020 Annual Business Plan (the Plan) flows from the UDI-Edmonton Region (UDI-ER) Board’s 2018-20 Strategic Plan and is an integrated element of its overarching strategy to address various business needs, opportunities and challenges.

Fundamental Role

UDI Edmonton Region is a key voice in shaping public policy and regulation for sustainable growth in Edmonton Metro.

Mission - Why we exist.

To be the advocate for the land development industry in the Edmonton Metro Region. In accordance with our affiliated organizations, UDI-ER is dedicated to “Building Communities Together” by promoting wise, efficient and productive urban growth.

Vision - What we aspire to.

To be the champion for the land development industry in the Edmonton Metropolitan Region.

January 15, 2020

Rentals.ca December 2019 Rent Report

According to Rentals.ca listings data, the average rent for Canadian properties in November of 2019 was $1,918 per month, a decrease of 1.1% monthly, but an increase of 9.4% annually. The median rental rate was $1,850 per month in November, up 15.6% from a year earlier ($1,600).

January 13, 2020

Financial Post: Canada’s ‘ticking demographic time bomb’ is a problem — but it could solve a bigger one

Housing prices are back on the Bank of Canada’s radar, Governor Stephen Poloz revealed in a fireside chat in Vancouver yesterday.

January 10, 2020

Edmonton Journal: Canada gains surprise 35,200 jobs in December, unemployment rate falls to 5.6%

Canada gained a higher-than-expected 35,200 net jobs in December, entirely in full-time positions, while the unemployment rate fell to 5.6%, official data showed on Friday, figures that could ease some concerns about the strength of the Canadian economy.

January 08, 2020

Global News: Iveson provides mortgage stress test relief ideas ahead of February report

The city has delayed publishing an analysis of what the federal “stress test” for lending means to potential home owners in Edmonton. However, the mayor has given Ottawa some suggestions on ways to improve the mortgage system.

January 03, 2020

Job creation tax cut: Alberta open for business

The Government has reduced Alberta’s corporate tax rate from 11 per cent to 10 per cent as part of the ongoing Job Creation Tax Cut.

January 03, 2020

Canadian home sales edge higher in November

Statistics recently released by the Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) show national home sales continued to edge higher in November 2019.

December 23, 2019

'Reset our conversation': Iveson eyes better relationship with provincial government in wake of budget

“We’ve provided some fairly frank feedback to the Government of Alberta about what a respectful government to governance relationship would look like and how we would like to be able to add value in decision-making so there are no unintended consequences for new rules that come in,” he said. “Early in their mandate, they’re making their big moves and I think we understand that. But we’ve all got to settle into the next several years and find the opportunities to work together.”

December 12, 2019

Alberta still struggling with pipeline capacity, low growth: ATB Alberta Economic Outlook

Calgary—ATB Financial’s newest Alberta Economic Outlook shows our province’s real GDP is forecast to grow slightly higher—0.9 per cent—in 2020. 

Our economy should get some help from increased oil production, pipeline construction, an uptick in natural gas prices, a strong tourism sector and ongoing population growth. However, this growth depends on progress being made in expanding oil pipeline capacity and toward resolving international trade disputes.

“With construction of the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline finally underway and the Enbridge Line 3 project moving forward, things are looking up at least a little for Alberta's beleaguered oil patch,” said Todd Hirsch, vice-president and chief economist at ATB Financial. “Despite this, Alberta continues to swim upstream against a current of external economic challenges such as the Chinese ban on Canadian canola, the trade war between the U.S. and China and ongoing opposition to new pipelines.” 

ATB’s Economic Outlook, released today, analyzes how our economy is performing and provides insight into where it is heading. Its key findings include:

  • The price of Alberta’s natural gas will go up over the next few months but won’t do much to reverse the sector’s low growth

  • Retail sales are down and unlikely to recover by the end of the year due to the sluggish economy and high consumer debt

  • Both residential and non-residential construction spending remains low despite a pick-up in activity in the third quarter

  • Alberta’s unemployment rate is well above the national average and is forecast to remain high

  • Despite the Chinese government lifting its ban on Canadian meat, Alberta farmers continue to be challenged by the country’s canola ban, a difficult harvest and soft prices

“If global trade relations improve, we should see some growth in our manufacturing sector,” said Hirsch. “Other bright spots include tourism and the tech sector but 2020 will still be a slow year for the Alberta economy as oil and gas investment remains constrained by limited transportation capacity."

Read the complete ATB Financial Economic Outlook here.

December 05, 2019

Fraser Institute Study - What’s Changed, By How Much, and What Remains to be Done: An Analysis of Alberta’s Budget.

This study finds that the Alberta government’s plan to eliminate the provincial deficit by reducing program spending by 1.6 per cent over the next four years is less aggressive—both by timeline and by the amount of spending reductions—than previous successful deficit-reduction plans by other governments across Canada, including in Alberta, Saskatchewan and at the federal level.

November 29, 2019

RE-MAX 2020 Housing Outlook - Prairies

A brief synopsis of the 2020 housing outlook for the Prairie Region, including Edmonton.

November 21, 2019

City of Edmonton Organization Structure

October 2, 2019

City of Edmonton Organization Structure | Deptartment, Branch, Section

November 18, 2019

News Release: Cutting red tape to attract investment

Bill 25, the Red Tape Reduction Implementation Act, 2019, would streamline overburdened processes and eliminate outdated rules.

The proposed legislation is another way the government is taking action to reduce red tape – including eliminating unnecessary rules and regulations brought in under previous governments.

Bill 25 contains proposed changes to 11 pieces of legislation, which would speed up regulatory approvals to attract investment. These changes include removing administrative burdens for municipalities and hydroelectric developments.

In addition, the bill would repeal various pieces of legislation that are no longer in use.

“Bill 25 is the first bill of its kind that our government will introduce to cut costly red tape. Unnecessary red tape stifles economic growth, so we’re moving quickly to make changes that will attract investment back into our province. We need to get our job creators and innovators back to creating jobs. This bill is another step forward.”

Grant Hunter, Associate Minister of Red Tape Reduction

Highlights of the bill includes:

  • Making it easier to provide consent for organ donation through the online registry.

  • Remove legislation that restricts the construction of wood buildings to six storeys.

  • Reducing delays for forest-management agreements and small-scale and low-impact hydroelectric developments.


“Alberta’s forest industry supports 40,000 jobs in 70 communities throughout the province. We create employment by harvesting a renewable and sustainable resource and having world-leading forestry practices. We also compete with producers from around the world. Eliminating red tape and taking a thoughtful approach to regulation will support forestry jobs and ensure the best environmental and resource-management outcomes for Albertans. We support and commend government for their approach to red tape reduction.”  

Paul Whittaker, president and CEO, Alberta Forest Products Association

“The Alberta ORGANization group is strongly in support of changes to the organ and tissue donor registry that simplify and streamline the online interface and process for the public to register their intent and consent to donate their organs and tissues.”

Linda Powell, chair, Alberta ORGANization Group

The introduction of this bill is another positive step forward in government’s commitment to reduce red tape and make life easier for Albertans. Suggestions about where government can cut even more red tape can be shared at CutRedTape.Alberta.ca.

Full details of the Bill 25 are available online.

Quick facts

  • Over the next four years, red tape reduction across government, combined with streamlined process and consolidating administrative services, is expected to save at least $140 million.

  • To date, government has received more than 4,000 public submissions.

  • More than 80 red tape initiatives are either implemented or ready for implementation.

  • Government is assessing more than 220 additional initiatives.

  • More than 70 more initiatives are expected to be ready for decisions before the end of the year.


Related information

November 15, 2019

Investing in Edmonton-area infrastructure projects

Government’s 2019 Capital Plan is making significant investments to enhance public infrastructure, benefiting Edmonton and area residents and businesses. 

Projects that support schools, health facilities, culture and recreation are among the capital projects in Edmonton and surrounding communities.

“Our government is investing $24.2 billion over four years to build, renew or maintain key infrastructure projects throughout the province, including in Edmonton and surrounding communities. Our investment in these priority infrastructure projects will help grow the economy, create jobs and ensure all Albertans benefit from an improved quality of life.”
- Prasad Panda, Minister of Infrastructure 

Quick facts
The 2019 Capital Plan carries through on previous infrastructure commitments and provides for a number of new projects, such as: 
o    More than 30 new and ongoing school projects in Beaumont, Edmonton, Leduc, Morinville, Sherwood Park, Spruce Grove, St. Albert and Stony Plain
o    Health facilities in Edmonton, including the Stollery Children’s Hospital Critical Care Program, the CapitalCare Norwood Redevelopment, the Misericordia Hospital, new south Edmonton hospital, and planning for the University of Alberta Hospital Brain Centre Neuro Intensive Care Unit
o    Yellowhead Youth Centre Redevelopment project in Edmonton
o    Cultural and recreation projects such as the Winspear Centre, Telus World of Science, the Northern Jubilee Auditorium and planning for Big Island Park
o    Other multi-year projects, including Edmonton’s southwest ring road expansion, the University of Alberta Dentistry Pharmacy Functional Building Renewal, and the Edmonton Law Courts, as part of a province-wide courthouse renewal initiative, Leduc’s Agrivalue Processing Business Incubator, and Highway 19 between Highway 2 and Highway 60

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© 2017 by Urban Development Institute - Edmonton Region

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