If you’ve been keeping your eye on the vacant land that is beside our Peace Garden Park community garden, then you likely know there have been rumours flying about land swaps, tall buildings, and shadows on the garden. With this post we hope to clear up the rumours and provide some background.
Most school sites exist on municipal reserve land and are managed through Joint Use Agreements between the Government of Alberta, the municipality, and the school division(s). St. John’s School, however, was built on a site the Edmonton Catholic School Board owned outright.
St. John’s School was operational as a school from 1938 until 1969. The Edmonton Learning Academy (a private school) operated in the building until the summer of 2014. The building remained vacant until the Edmonton Catholic School Board sold the site to Haya Homes in January 2016.
Haya Homes originally discussed doing a land swap with the community garden. The land where the garden sits is owned by the City of Edmonton and loaned to the community league for the Peace Garden Park. Swapping the garden site so that the garden was on the south portion of the lot didn’t happen and Haya Homes ultimately sold the site to Abbey Lane Homes in 2016.
Abbey Lane Homes, the developer and owner of the site, attended our Civics Committee meetings twice. At the second meeting with our Civics Committee, Abbey Lane Homes presented a proposed development that would shadow the garden with two towers. Recently, the Civics Committee voted unanimously to write a letter of non-support for the proposed development.
Abbey Lane Homes applied for re-zoning March 2017. The first public open house was held September 9, 2017 to allow community members and residents to take a look at the proposed development on paper, ask questions of the developer and City of Edmonton planning department representatives.
The City of Edmonton has posted updates online here.
If you have comments or questions regarding the site, please reach out to the City of Edmonton planner on the file – Mark Harrison (firstname.lastname@example.org).