Jane’s Walk set for this weekend

Red Deerians can hit the streets with their neighbours to explore the walkability, history, and future development of the City as part of Jane’s Walk, set for May 2 to 4.

For the fourth year, Red Deer is celebrating Jane’s Walk, a global series of free walks offered to residents interested in exploring their urban environment. Started in 2007, Jane’s Walk honours the legacy of urban activist and writer Jane Jacobs, who championed the interests of local residents and pedestrians over a car-centred approach to planning.

“The tours encourage people to learn more about their local culture and history in a pedestrian-friendly way,” said Lauren Maris, environmental program specialist with the City of Red Deer. “The event recognizes the built environment, one of the areas of focus in the City’s Environmental Master Plan, and its goal to create well-integrated compact communities that minimize negative environmental impacts.”

Red Deer hosts six walks this year, from May 2 through May 4. More information on Jane’s Walk and details on local walks can be found at www.janeswalk.org/canada/reddeer.

On May 2nd the Jane’s Walking School Bus will kick off the event. Join the group as children make a safe and easy trek to the nearby elementary school. Hop, skip, jump, and chat along the way with friends, being active and having fun. The group will meet at 50 Springfield Ave. and end at Mountview School. Start time is 8 a.m.

Email Emily at dambergers@shaw.ca to sign up.

On May 3rd the ‘Riverside Meadows to Riverlands: Downtown Revitalization Process’ walk will take place. Since joint Riverside Meadows and downtown redevelopment plans were created in 2000 plenty has happened over the past 15 years. The walk will also explore recent private developments and public infrastructure upgrades that will occur over the next two years. The walk will be led by Jordan Furness and Quincy Brown. Participants are asked to meet at 58A Ave. and Kerry Wood Dr. Start time is 1:30 p.m.

Also on May 3rd is the ‘Where Will All the Boomers Go?’ walk. As boomers reach senior citizen status, they will be significant in shaping our communities. Explore how boomers have built, and will continue to influence, the urban landscape. This walk will be led by Kari Idland and Maureen Durrant. Walkers are asked to meet at East Hill Save-on-Foods by 2:30 p.m.

‘How 3 Railways Transformed a Small Settlement into a Regional Centre’ walk will take place May 4. Learn how more than a century ago, three railways impacted the small settlement that is now the City of Red Deer by creating two development booms that transformed it into the distribution, transportation and communications hub of Central Alberta. This walk will be led by Paul Pettypiece. Participants can meet at the arches on 52 Ave. near 45 St. at 11 a.m.

Also on May 4th participants can take a walk and learn about ‘Reflections on the Past: Red Deer and its Early Urban Plan.’ This walk will help people look at the downtown and see how Red Deer’s first town plan, established in 1911, still shapes the City today. This will be led by Michael Dawe. Walkers can meet at Red Deer Museum + Art Gallery, 4525 47A Ave. Start time is 1:30 p.m.

‘The Bronze Ghost Collection Walking Tour’ walk will take place May 4th as well. Amble through Red Deer’s downtown and hear the stories behind the ‘ghosts’ of the City’s bronze sculpture collection. The sculptures represent people, events and animals that helped form the Red Deer we know today. This walk will be led by Pat Matheson. Participants are asked to meet at the Recreation Centre parking lot at 3 p.m.

More information can be found at www.janeswalk.org/canada/reddeer.

– Fawcett