Skip to main content
The Globe and Mail
Support Quality Journalism.
The Globe and Mail
First Access to Latest
Investment News
Collection of curated
e-books and guides
Inform your decisions via
Globe Investor Tools
Just$1.99
per week
for first 24 weeks

Enjoy unlimited digital access
Enjoy Unlimited Digital Access
Get full access to globeandmail.com
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
Just $1.99 per week for the first 24 weeks
var select={root:".js-sub-pencil",control:".js-sub-pencil-control",open:"o-sub-pencil--open",closed:"o-sub-pencil--closed"},dom={},allowExpand=!0;function pencilInit(o){var e=arguments.length>1&&void 0!==arguments[1]&&arguments[1];select.root=o,dom.root=document.querySelector(select.root),dom.root&&(dom.control=document.querySelector(select.control),dom.control.addEventListener("click",onToggleClicked),setPanelState(e),window.addEventListener("scroll",onWindowScroll),dom.root.removeAttribute("hidden"))}function isPanelOpen(){return dom.root.classList.contains(select.open)}function setPanelState(o){dom.root.classList[o?"add":"remove"](select.open),dom.root.classList[o?"remove":"add"](select.closed),dom.control.setAttribute("aria-expanded",o)}function onToggleClicked(){var l=!isPanelOpen();setPanelState(l)}function onWindowScroll(){window.requestAnimationFrame(function() {var l=isPanelOpen(),n=0===(document.body.scrollTop||document.documentElement.scrollTop);n||l||!allowExpand?n&&l&&(allowExpand=!0,setPanelState(!1)):(allowExpand=!1,setPanelState(!0))});}pencilInit(".js-sub-pencil",!1); // via darwin-bg var slideIndex = 0; carousel(); function carousel() { var i; var x = document.getElementsByClassName("subs_valueprop"); for (i = 0; i < x.length; i++) { x[i].style.display = "none"; } slideIndex++; if (slideIndex> x.length) { slideIndex = 1; } x[slideIndex - 1].style.display = "block"; setTimeout(carousel, 2500); } //

The river valley in Edmonton on June 24, 2015.

AMBER BRACKEN/The Canadian Press

A proposal from a private company to build a gondola across Edmonton’s river valley will keep moving forward after city council approved an important step Monday.

Council members, in an 8-5 vote, supported a framework for a working relationship with Prairie Sky Gondola.

The company wants to string cable cars across the North Saskatchewan River between downtown and Whyte Avenue, a popular street with bars, restaurants and stores.

Story continues below advertisement

Prairie Sky Gondola has said it does not need any money from the city for the project, which the company expects would cost between $132-million and $155-million.

“It would be one thing if folks were coming to the city of Edmonton saying, ‘We have this really great idea – all you need to do is spend $100-million,’ ” Mayor Don Iveson said before voting in favour of the framework.

“What’s actually happening here is someone coming and saying, ‘Hey, we think we want to spend $100-million or more in your community to do something cool that we think we can make work economically.’ ”

Mr. Iveson said it’s important for the city to send a message to private investors that it’s open for business and willing to work with them on proposals.

Despite council’s go-ahead, the project will still need to go through several detailed studies, including a transportation impact assessment, environmental impact assessment and geotechnical assessment.

The approval of land will also need to be considered by council, and there are some provincial and federal approvals that are required.

Some councillors were skeptical about moving forward with the idea.

Story continues below advertisement

“It is too good to be true to me,” Councillor Mohinder Banga said during debate.

“I would love to see our city doing good in the attractions portion,” he said. “My only problem is I don’t think I am willing or should be putting taxpayer dollars even at a little bit of risk.

“This is not the time.”

Councillor Sarah Hamilton said her constituents believe the city should be focused on its own transit system.

“I owe it to those people that they are able to get to work and school on time before I can move on from that,” she said.

During a committee meeting last week, council members also heard from about 30 people from the community.

Story continues below advertisement

Some were supportive of the proposal, while others were concerned about a lack of public input and the potential environmental effects on the river valley.

Several councillors raised similar concerns Monday, but said they were willing to support moving forward with the proposal’s next step, because it will both allow input and further study.

“There’s a lot more hurdles,” Councillor Ben Henderson said. “The question about the environmental impact is a valid one that needs to be looked at. But we need the data in front of us to do that and we won’t have that until the next stage.

“If the answers come back and they say there is significant environmental problems ... then that would probably be a stop.”

Our Morning Update and Evening Update newsletters are written by Globe editors, giving you a concise summary of the day’s most important headlines. Sign up today.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies