As of next week or so, we’ll be celebrating the seventeenth anniversary of moving into our house, our neighbourhood, and this place we call home. Seventeen years is all at once a short blip and a really long time. It sometimes seems like we’ve both lived here forever and also just moved in. In reality though, a lot has changed. Where I look out my back window and see houses, trees, grass, gardens, birds, and blue sky, on the day we moved in was a construction zone with heaps of clay clumped into piles amongst weeds, lonely streets paved through a blank field, and utility stakes poking from the ground. We “built” our house, in that we went to a…

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It’s been nearly a year and a whole long winter of impassable trails through the river valley since I posted an update about the work being done to turn a small bit of land with a big local history into a small provincial park. The last time we thought about that effort on this site, a small group of us had gone off on a short adventure run to test our prospects of finding a runnable trail between my house and the bit of natural space clinging to the edge of the river. What we found instead was a dead end. And a furthering of the mystery behind this bit of future park where it seemed our odds of future…

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Call it civic pride or call it mathematical curiosity, either way the latest census data for Canada was released this week and my city officially recorded one million residents for the first time in history. One million. That’s a lot of neighbours, most of whom I’ll probably never ever meet. A great big crowd, busy streets and an ever-more bustling mini metropolis with which to contend. We sometimes talk about the switch from being a big little city to becoming a little big city, and what that means for everything from being a resident here, to welcoming visitors, to building and growing and changing now and into the future. Admittedly, it’s been a tough couple of weeks to think about…

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Almost three months ago to this day, readers, I introduced you to a local puzzle that I was hoping to solve. Big Island, to catch you up, is a modest chunk of river valley wilderness with a backstory that both intrigued the explorer in me and piqued the curious pathfinder that lives in the uncaged corners of my soul. I live a short(ish) walk from the winding North Saskatchewan River, a silty mountain-fed prairie waterway that snakes its way across the province and bisects the city in which I live. If you recall, the city leaders have built policy around the idea of preserving what they term a “ribbon of green” that is our river valley. They do this as…

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