News / Edmonton

Winner of the Edmonton Project: Gondola over the North Saskatchewan river

Downtown Business Association says the project could help improve connectivity between downtown and Old Strathcona

Gondola over the North Saskatchewan river is the winner of the Edmonton Project.

Gondola over the North Saskatchewan river is the winner of the Edmonton Project.

Out of ten projects that included a food truck ferris wheel and saunas in the river valley, a proposed gondola spanning the North Saskatchewan river took top prize in the Edmonton Project.

The concept was submitted by an Edmonton couple, Gary and Amber Poliquin, who pitched a gondola that would connect downtown with Old Strathcona.

“Connectivity in central Edmonton is always a good thing,” said Ian O’Donnell, the executive director of the Downtown Business Association.

The Edmonton Project is a design initiative backed by five businesses including ATB Financial and Zag Creative that asked people to submit ideas starting last August. A panel of judges named a winner Tuesday night.

While there is no offical funding attached to the project, organizers say they will be fundraising.

O'Donnell says it was the versatility of the gondola that swayed him.

“It could be a transportation piece in terms of commuters from the south side to downtown and vice versa. It could be an interesting tourism piece for people visiting our city. The views would be amazing.”

The idea includes three gondola stations located at the Shaw Conference Centre, one near RE/MAX Field, and one at the parking lot across from the Old Strathcona Farmers’ Market providing a transportation method with views of the North Saskatchewan River.

“I think it’s fantastic, it’s dream big idea. We asked the judges to think big and dream big and they did,” said Alyson Hodson, a founding partner of the Edmonton Project.

“The next steps are, its up to us to prove the feasibility and value of the project to Edmontonians.”

Although there are no timelines for the project yet, she says they want to make sure the public is on board.

She says after public engagement they will move forward with a fundraising strategy.

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