Mayor Karen Sorensen presented awards to the winners of the #WeAreBanff commuter challenge. Employees from the Town of Banff, Parks Canada, Banff Lake Louise Tourism and The Banff Centre challenged each other to use active transportation to get to work over the summer, with prizes for individual participants and an overall prize for the organization that had the largest percentage of commuters vs. days worked. Town of Banff employees won the “Rusty Handlebar” trophy with 92.6 per cent green commute days. Overall, 11,055 green commute days were recorded, avoiding 10 tonnes of carbon emissions while freeing up 200 parking stalls for visitors each day during the challenge.
Biosphere Institute of the Bow Valley executive director Melanie Watt spoke to council as a delegation, giving an update on the organization’s initiatives in Banff. She highlighted the Sustainable Action Banff emails that have been going out to residents, promoting local green programs that include ways to be more sustainable. She also spoke about the new Small Steps Challenge that asks residents to take a small step towards becoming more sustainable, post a photo of it on the Biosphere’s Facebook page, then challenge a friend to take their own small step. A list of small steps are available at http://biosphereinstitute.org/.
Council voted to cancel a project to build a self-storage facility at 300 Hawk Avenue and return the remaining funds of $36,211 to the capital reserve. Administration had conducted a market study to see if a self-storage facility would be feasible in the industrial compound along with a vehicle/bus storage facility to generate revenue. Following a market study with local and regional vendors, it was found a self-storage facility wouldn’t be financial viable.
Council received a fourth quarter capital project update. A total of $26.7 million in capital project funding has been approved by council for 85 ongoing projects. Good progress has been made in the majority of projects with liabilities identified early and acted upon as part of the project management process.