May 19th, 2024

Community Conversation showcases city projects

By Alejandra Pulido-Guzman - Lethbridge Herald on April 27, 2024.

Herald photo by Alejandra Pulido-Guzman James Nicholls and Steve Rozee of the City's Waste and Environment department speak with residents during the Community Conversation event on Thursday at the Enmax Centre.


Residents had the opportunity during the city’s annual Community Conversation Thursday to engage with the City of Lethbridge and various partners to learn about a multitude of projects happening in the city.

Tara Grindle, manager of communications and engagement with the City, said the idea behind the annual event is to bring multiple projects under one roof and give residents an opportunity to learn about them without having to attend multiple open houses.

“We can bring everybody together, learn all about everything happening in the city,” said Grindle. “We also have lots of our partner organizations that we work with here to show off all the great work they’re doing.”

She said the event continues to grow in popularity as more community conversations take place, with the last one offered in the fall of 2023.

“I think we’ve got a good group here at the Enmax Centre. It works really well for us to get everything laid out and give lots of space for everybody.”

Grindle said there were about 48 projects showcased Thursday, from 25 different departments or partner organizations, which this year included the University of Lethbridge, Tourism Lethbridge, Lethbridge Sport Council, Lethbridge County, Downtown Business Revitalization Zone and Heart of Our City committee, Lethbridge Police Services and Lethbridge Police Commission.

“There’s lots going on always. Transportation is busy; lots of projects going on there. They’ve got an example of some of the mobility and accessibility lights that you can push to hear the sounds and those kinds of things.”

Grindle added that Lethbridge Fire and EMS were displaying some of their equipment and giving tips on recruitment for those interested in applying for any of their positions.

“Heading into the spring parks is a big thing for us, lots of new information on parks and pathways that we’re going to be developing and getting feedback from the community on those things,” said Grindle.

She added that members of the waste and environment departments were on site to answer question on water conservation and other projects the city has been working along with city council.

“The other big one is cycling. We know that there’s been some questions about the new cycling infrastructure downtown and we’ve got a lot of folks here to help explain what that is, some educational pieces and looking at new cycling routes in the city, as well.”

When asked about the importance on hosting events like the Community Conversation, Grindle said an engaged community is a successful community.

“We all have to work together and the city is here to serve the residents. That’s what we want to do and I think one of the benefits of us doing this is all of the departments also get to see what their other coworkers are working on.”

It also provided an opportunity for the city to receive feedback from residents, Grindle added.

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I have to laugh at the Herald Poll today and the votes saying that Community Conversations was not worth while. The same people, likely, who lose their mind when a project has gone through years of planning and public interaction – they say, “Where did this come from?!”

This is a great event for people engaged in the democratic process.

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