Tag Archives: Alberta

Edmonton Storm Update: Flooding!

Not far from where I live, there’s a storm water facility that doubles as a habitat for water birds and is also a pretty pleasant park. Well, because of the heavy rain (see my other post about it here), it flooded. And I took a video!

It was quite the scene when I went down there. But this is the purpose of the pond. It provides a place for storm water to go, and prevents flooding at street level in the neighbourhood. Many of the newer neighbourhoods have this kind of planning. Smart idea, isn’t it?

Severe Thunderstorm Here Right Now! (Edmonton)

At this very moment, the second severe thunderstorm in the last couple hours is coming through. Strong wind, heavy rain, and very loud thunder accompanying the lightning which has been striking very near here. I recorded some of the first storm on video and posted it on YouTube. Have a look.

While that storm is done, the second one is going through now. The wind was so strong that it made me wonder if there was a tornado. I found out that the tornado that passed through Edmonton in 1987 actually went through the neighbourhood I live in, only about two or three hundred metres from here!

The weather today is crazy. But I love storms. Do you?

The Sky Right Now

As is typical for Edmonton weather, we have another thunderstorm. The forecast says thunderstorms all day until about 11 pm. This is the sky right now:

Nice, huh? The clouds are behaving like a very slow boil. They’re moving around a bit, but slowly. It’s interesting to look at, but since it’s started raining, it’s hard to see how the clouds really look.

Well, tomorrow is Canada Day, and we’re hoping to see some fireworks. Thankfully, the forecast is good for tomorrow. But it’s the only good day over the next six days. Every other day is expected to be stormy.

It’s a good thing my daughter now says she likes thunderstorms. She’s not afraid during the day.

Edmonton Tour: The Arts District

Time for the third part of the downtown Edmonton tour. This time, the Arts District. Edmonton is known as a cultural city with a lot of music, arts, and museums. We’ll take a look at some of the interesting architecture in this area.

But first, the amazing river valley. Downtown is situated at the top of the valley, commanding this great view down to the North Saskatchewan River.

There’s a river boat called the Edmonton Queen. You can eat on it and go on a river cruise. It was recently sold in an auction.

A look in another direction. The river is quite green.

Now, on to the Arts District. One of the cultural buildings is the Citadel Theatre. There, you can watch plays and musicals. Not only that, there’s an indoor garden. It’s always warm in there.

And here is the Francis Winspear Centre for Music, a concert hall that features the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra and other musical performances.

A look back across the street, you can see the Citadel Theatre.

Here is the Stanley A. Milner Library, the main branch of the Edmonton Public Library. It’s not a very attractive building, but will soon be undergoing a major transformation. I can’t wait to see what it looks like.

Right at the heart of the Arts District is the Sir Winston Churchill Square. It’s an open square with green space, cafes, and more. Several festivals occur here every year, as well as the occasional movie.

The Square has a large open plaza for festivals.

One of the newest buildings is the Art Gallery of Alberta. It’s a unique design, isn’t it?

And then we have Edmonton City Hall. This is one of the more attractive city halls I’ve seen. It has a large glass pyramid and a wading pool right in front. In winter, you can go skating on it.

This is a war memorial in front of City Hall.

This part of City Hall contains a restaurant and changing area for the pool/skating rink.

And here’s the pool. It was closed when I was there, even though it was a very warm day.

Another feature at City Hall. Nice shady outdoor corridor.

Looking up! Like the windows?

This is the pyramid from inside.

Also under the pyramid, take a look at some of the architecture.

To finish it off, looking back at City Hall from Churchill Square, you can see some food trucks. Edmonton has a fleet of these trucks offering many different kinds of food. They’re very popular.

And that is the Arts District. I missed going to the Royal Alberta Museum, but it’s currently under construction. Next time, I’ll show you the government centre, including the Alberta Legislature.

Let me know what you thought in the comments below.

We Went to a Dog Show!

Yesterday, we had a bit of a fun day looking at some dogs. The Northern Alberta Canine Association held their annual dog show in Edmonton this weekend, and we went to check out these:

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Toy poodles! While there were only two being shown, we went there to talk to some of the owners and find out about good breeders in the area. But they weren’t the only dogs we saw. I kind of liked these:

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Do you know what it is? It’s a keeshond. It’s a Dutch breed. But there’s more! Check out the video I took. Plenty of dogs to see.

To be honest, I wasn’t exactly sure if the French bulldog was a French bulldog or a Boston Terrier, but it was smaller and stockier, so I thought it was probably a Frenchie.

You may notice something new with the video, too. I’ve been working on improving my videos and channel, and since I’ve verified my channel, I can now use custom thumbnails and cards. You can see a card in the upper right-hand corner, the i in a circle. They’re available throughout the video, and you can open and close them, but they draw your attention at an appropriate time in the video. Watch the whole video and you’ll see.

Have you ever been to a dog show? What’s your favourite breed? Let me know in the comments below.

Edmonton Tour: Skyscrapers and More

I love skyscrapers. I love architecture. Here you’ll see some of downtown’s taller and older architecture. But this is only part one! There will be a couple more posts that feature some of the more beautiful architecture.

First up is MacEwan University. It’s a unique set of buildings downtown.

And here is the main entrance.

Not under construction yet, you can see an ad for the Encore Tower, which will be a forty storey condo building. Behind to the left is Fox Tower I and on the right is one of the Icon towers.

Here is the Quest Condominium building.

Here’s an older building I don’t quite remember the name of.

And this is the Neon Sign Museum. The entire museum is on the wall of that building, which is an old AGT building, now Telus.

The building in the middle is Manulife Place, now the second tallest in the city, though was the tallest for many years. To its right is Commerce Place.

Here’s a closer look. I really like these two buildings.

Here’s the Epcor Tower. It’s the current tallest in the city, though a couple under construction will be much taller.

And the always attractive Manulife Place again.

The gold towers are Scotia Place, which are going to change colour soon. They don’t make the gold glass anymore, and it’s too expensive to maintain.

And this is downtown’s famous hotel, the Fairmont MacDonald Hotel. It’s a very expensive luxury hotel. Don’t mind my finger.

This used to be a place where you could make phone calls. The payphones have been removed. Now you can get a little shelter from the rain and look at lots of posters and ads.

This is the Alberta Hotel. It was reconstructed recently. Every brick was catalogued and stored for a long time, then they rebuilt it from the records they had.

And there’s Canada Place, the federal government’s home in Edmonton. It’s actually a massive building, though not tall. It’s quite long and has the largest floor space of any building downtown.

A look down Jasper Avenue, the main street through downtown.

The Sunlife building, my old workplace. That was a long time ago.

And that is downtown. At least, those are the skyscrapers and older buildings. Next time, I’ll show you around the Arts District, a very lively area with some unique architecture.

Comments are always welcome!

A Storm Was Brewing

You may remember that I love thunderstorms. One thing I love about Edmonton is that there are thunderstorms often in summer. Well, last night, while I was sitting in the living room, a strong wind suddenly came, and dark clouds moved in. I went outside and this is what I saw.

Very dark! The weather news said a thunderstorm was moving along the south side of the city and coming in this direction. I was very interested in seeing some lightning. It didn’t happen. It rained, but no lightning. I was disappointed. The dark clouds came, but they didn’t deliver.

Tonight, there’s a 40% chance of thunderstorms again. Not great odds, and I don’t expect it to happen.

Anyone else like thunderstorms?

Edmonton Tour: A Changing Downtown

Before I lived in Japan, I lived in Edmonton. And now I’m back. During the eleven years that I was away, a lot had changed. And the biggest changes are happening now. There are massive construction projects going on. In this first part of my Edmonton tour, I’ll show you some major construction projects downtown.

The biggest one is the ICE District. One of the centrepieces of this project is Rogers Place, the new home of the Edmonton Oilers. They’re going to start playing there this fall.

Can you imagine walking up these stairs?

A bit further west, there’s this office building. It’s pretty narrow, but from what I’ve seen of the rendering, it’s a lot of glass.

Moving back to the ICE District, here is the office for the project. Inside, there’s a model of the project, which you can see as the glowing buildings in the window. The three tallest towers will be the three tallest buildings in the city. The tallest will be the tallest building in Canada outside Toronto at 251 metres tall. It’ll be the headquarters of Stantec and above that, condominiums. Can you imagine living in the penthouse?

While walking east, I came upon the Fox towers. The one on the right is finished, while the one on the left is under construction.

This building, Ultima, was recently completed. Looks pretty tall and pretty good.

Back to the ICE District. Here is the main construction site for the Stantec tower and the hotel. Lots of cranes and a big hole in the ground.

There’s a tower that’s been topped out. It’s the City of Edmonton Tower, and will house a lot of offices for the city.

A close-up reveals a gentle curve.

I went up into a parkade across the street to get this photo. It looks much bigger in person. This is where the Stantec and hotel towers will go.

You can see the location of Rogers Place in relation to the hole.

And here’s the City of Edmonton Tower from the other side. You can see the curve here, too.

In the heart of the financial district is the Kelly-Ramsey Building. This office tower is on the site of a historic building that burned down.

Luckily, they were able to save the outside of the building, took it apart brick by brick, and then rebuilt it as part of the podium of the tower.

And that is all I managed to get. There are several other construction sites, most notably the Royal Alberta Museum.

Next time, I’ll give you a tour of the skyscrapers I saw in the early part of my walk.

Comments are appreciated!

Amazing Aurora Display

Last night, I checked the Aurora Forecast app on my phone. This is what I saw:

I’m at the red pin position. All that red just to the north. Well, a quick check outside revealed a faint aurora all over the sky. There were a lot of lights around, so it wasn’t very bright. I told my wife that we could see aurora outside, and we quickly went out. We took my sister’s car to the next neighbourhood over, which is right on the edge of the city, and we went into a park under construction. No lights. The result? Amazing aurora. Best I have ever seen.

We came back home, and my wife got her camera. Turns out we could’ve just gone to the park near the house and it was nearly as good. And she took pictures. Here are a couple she took.

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It was green! We could see that it was green with the naked eye, but the camera captured it wonderfully. But I really like the next picture.

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Aurora and city lights with a pond reflection. Although it’s somewhat blurry, that’s what you get when you don’t have a tripod and have a longer exposure.

And you know what? There’s a possible repeat performance for the next two nights.

Did you see the northern lights last night? Have you ever seen it? Let me know in the comments below.