Old attitudes still exist about north Red Deer

I would like to clarify remarks made in the Advocate on Saturday regarding the revitalization of the area of Red Deer north of 67 Street.

I would like to clarify remarks made in the Advocate on Saturday regarding the revitalization of the area of Red Deer north of 67 Street.

The article gave the information that the Community Association has not been active for 14 years; this is incorrect. The Aspen Heights/Normandeau Community Enhancement Association was registered in September of 2001 in direct response to the fact that the area was not eligible for City funding to enhance the park and playground area by the Aspen Heights School.

In 2002, the Association, along with Aspen Heights School, The Kevin Sirois Fitness Centre, The Boys and Girls Club and the David Thompson Health Region undertook to programme Community Events and Summer Recreation Programmes for the children in the neighbourhood.

In July 2003 funding was received from Red Deer and District Community Foundation and Provincial Grants to extend the sliding hill in the park, provide seating areas and tree planting in the play area.

In 2005 the City contributed trees to enhance the park area and help make it the pleasant park it is to day.

Since that time there has not been the interest in the Community Association that we would have liked, however, the article gives an impression of the residents in North Red Deer that I find insulting.

Yes, this area is lacking in amenities, but it is not the fault of the citizens, the City Councils of the time found it more to their advantage to concentrate on other areas of the city to the detriment of the North. Just think how many times the renovations of the G.H. Dawe was delayed.

As Riverside Meadows has experienced, there has always been an attitude of a different sort to those people living north of the river. People have been working for some time to change this, only to have unthinking remarks like these remove all forward progress.

While we may not have the facilities that other areas have, don’t put the lack at the feet of the population. The Aspen Heights/Normandeau Community Enhancement Association of the time although a very small group, worked with what was available to us at the time.

We are proud of what we accomplished and certainly extend the new members wishes for great success in their plans and will extend all the assistance we can in whatever plans are ahead for the area.

Sandra Ballum

Red Deer

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