It’s time for another edition of our weekly column from the A-Team. Here is some important news for this week.

The City Council meeting last Tuesday heavily focused on the progress report of the 2018 – 2021 Strategic Plan for economic growth in the community. From Fort McMurray Today:

Council discusses Strategic Plan, economic growth

In January, council approved the blueprint outlining a plan for social and economic growth in the community.

It focuses on four key priorities: Responsible government, downtown revitalization, regional economic development, and rural and Indigenous communities and partnerships.

Updates on the Strategic Plan progress will be heard quarterly throughout the 2018-2021 duration.

RMWB administration said all initiatives are currently on track.

Councillor Jane Stroud said she is pleased to see the development in some of the rural areas.

“I believe this rural sewer project ties in nicely with the Truth and Reconciliation report,” she said. “We are aware that Fort Chipewyan has had pipe water sewer for many years and I’m pleased that we’re moving forward to insure that all our rural hamlets have this same service.” Via fortmcmurraytoday.com

Among other things, the council plans to discuss FIFO during the May 22 meeting.

In other news, work is already starting to build the Willow Square Continuing Care Centre., according to Elizabeth Priest of Mix News:

Work Begins To Turn Willow Square Into Reality

On Friday, Premier Rachel Notley announced at the Northern Lights Regional Health Centre construction is proceeding and on schedule on the $110 million Willow Square Continuing Care Centre.

“It surprised me no end that a city the size of Fort McMurray, that does what it does for the province of Alberta, has gone on as long as it has without proper longterm care and I’m so proud we’re able to be in the position now.”

The centre, which will be located at the corner of Hospital Street and Franklin Avenue, will have 144 spaces and room to expand as needed. h/t mix1037fm.com

This is great news for the community, both in terms of jobs created and the impact on the liveability of Fort McMurray.

Lastly, three facilities in Alberta are offering a $25-a-day childcare. From My McMurray:

Three facilities in the region offering $25-a-day childcare

Three new facilities in the Wood Buffalo region will now offer the reduced childcare rate, the Children First Care Centre, Fort McMurray Boys and Girls Club and YMCA Birchwood Child Care Centre.

Janet Huffman with the Fort McMurray Early Years Coalition said they applaud the government for addressing affordable childcare, especially in the Wood Buffalo region.

“We have many young families who are feeling the strain when it comes to accessing child care. The support to childcare staff in programs will only enhance the quality care that children receive. The Early Years Coalition looks forward to supporting our new $25-a-day centres, as well as all childcare facilities in our region,” said Huffman.

The federal government plans to invest $136 million over three years to expand Alberta’s program and the province will invest an additional $4.5 million. read more at mymcmurray.com

When combined with the Willow Square developments, this shows that, regardless of the economy, Fort McMurray is continually becoming a more welcoming place to be.

Credit: mymcmurray.com

That’s all for this weeks’ roundup. Check back on The A-Team blog for more news and updates on Fort McMurray.