Canal development proposed for Rossdale

A group of prominent Edmontonians is floating the idea of building a two-kilometre-long canal through the Rossdale neighbourhood.

City councillors will discuss plans next week

Proponent Sol Rolingher says the canal could be used for recreational activities like paddle-boating or skating around the year. (Duncan Craig)

A group of prominent Edmontonians is floating the idea of building a two-kilometre-long canal through the Rossdale neighbourhood.

Can you imagine something like this in the heart of Rossdale? This is just one of the schematics included in the proposal. (Duncan Craig)
The proposal is based on other successful canal projects in U.S cities, such as San Antonio and Oklahoma City.

Lawyer Sol Rolingher was among the group who presented the idea to city council this week.

The $36-million project could see condos and businesses go up along the canal, which could be used in both summer and winter.

The proposed canal (seen in blue) would run through the heart of Rossdale Flats, with smaller canal off-shoots. To the east, the main canal would meet up with a community stream leading to the North Saskatchewan River. (Duncan Craig)
"We can skate on it, we can curl on it, we can play hockey on it, we can have all sorts of activities on it, and it will become the centre of all of our winter festivals."

Rolingher said the project will more than pay for itself, estimating it will bring in about $100 million in new investments.

“It's an old, old area, Rossdale. It needs brand new sewers, brand new streets, brand new lighting, a lot of amenities ... we're giving the city a way to do it with this kind of an amenity.”

Long-time resident Brian Gregg isn’t optimistic the plan will come to fruition.

"Probably won't happen, you know, it's a little bit of a pipe dream"

City council will take another look at the project next week.

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