City receives 62 proposals for redevelopment of Northlands Exhibition Lands

The City of Edmonton is no longer taking requests for ideas to redevelop Edmonton Exhibition Lands after receiving 62 submissions.

The city generated ideas from the public to work on a plan to redevelop the land where Northlands Coliseum currently sits closed. They received 12 formal submissions and 50 submissions through their web portal.

They’ll now evaluate all the submissions, develop a concept, and present the final report to council early next year. The city will hold a public consultation on June 21 at the Edmonton Expo Centre.

“We just got a lot of great ideas,” said Lyall Brenneis, manager of the Edmonton Exhibition Lands initiative. “A lot of enthusiasm for the project, in my mind, has come through what has been provided. It’s a real range from specific kind of ideas for a portion of the site to a plan for the entire site in terms of how it might be reconceived or redeveloped.”

Northlands Coliseum, the former home of the Edmonton Oilers, has been permanently closed since January. (Travis McEwan/CBC)

Agora Borealis is one of the only proposals planning to renovate Northlands Coliseum. The proposal has been submitted by a group of architects, engineers, and investors.

They propose to renovate the former home of the Edmonton Oilers into a “village” that could house 700 families, which would also include senior and student residences along with a hotel.

The floor that served as the building’s ice surface would be used as a recreation area.

“It can put about 500,000 square feet of residential living inside it, which seems to be a good thing for the neighbourhood and a lot better alternative to knocking it down or losing a piece of history here,” said Michael Koski, one of the project’s partners.

“The plan that Ben [Gardiner] and Haydar’s [Al Dahhan] group has put together takes some of the existing concrete panels off, converts them into balconies, and converts them into structure, but the big thing is it removes the stands and keeps the concourses in place. Those concourses have enough depth in between them that you can put another floor of residential living in there and create a lot of units.

Ben Gardiner, Haydar Al Dahhan, and Michael Koski are behind the Agora Borealis proposal. (Travis McEwan/CBC)

Brenneis was asked if there’s a possibility of the Coliseum being renovated in the city’s final plan, even though council voted in September to permanently close the building in January.

“Council decided to permanently close the Coliseum, and permanent closure is just that. That’s sort of a decision that they made. I really can’t say much more than that or than that decision has been debated and determined.”


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Sherwood Park

Sherwood Park is a large hamlet in Alberta, Canada within Strathcona County that is recognized as an urban service area.[7] It is located adjacent to the City of Edmonton’s eastern boundary,[8] generally south of Highway 16 (Yellowhead Trail), west of Highway 21 and north of Highway 630 (Wye Road).[9] Other portions of Sherwood Park extend beyond Yellowhead Trail and Wye Road, while Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) separates Refinery Row to the west from the balance of the hamlet to the east.[9]

Sherwood Park was established in 1955 on farmland of the Smeltzer family, east of Edmonton. With a population of 70,618 in 2016,[6] Sherwood Park has enough people to be Alberta’s seventh largest city, but technically retains the status of a hamlet. The Government of Alberta recognizes the Sherwood Park Urban Service Area as equivalent to a city.


Sherwood Park, originally named Campbelltown, was founded by John Hook Campbell and John Mitchell in 1953 when the Municipal District of Strathcona No. 83 approved their proposed development of a bedroom community east of Edmonton. The first homes within the community were marketed to the public in 1955. Canada Post intervened on the name of Campbelltown due to the existence of several other communities in Canada within the same name, so the community’s name was changed to Sherwood Park in 1956.

The Sherwood Park Urban Service Area is located in the Edmonton Capital Region along the western edge of central Strathcona County adjacent to the City of Edmonton.[8] The majority of the community is bound by Highway 16 (Yellowhead Highway) to the north, Highway 21 to the east, Highway 630 (Wye Road) to the south, and Anthony Henday Drive (Highway 216) to the west. The Refinery Row portion of Sherwood Park is located across Anthony Henday Drive to the west, between Sherwood Park Freeway and Highway 16. Numerous developments fronting the south side of Wye Road, including Wye Gardens, Wye Crossing, Salisbury Village and the Estates of Sherwood Park, are also within the community. Lands north of Highway 16 and south of Township Road 534/Oldman Creek between Range Road 232 (Sherwood Drive) to the west and Highway 21 to the east are also within the Sherwood Park urban service area.

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