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Thread: New Royal Alberta Museum

  1. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by dwells
    ...for any non-essential public construction projects we should set a threshold such as, maybe, a certain percentage of vacancy in residential and office space or a specified unemployment rate before we demand that construction go ahead without any further excuses.
    and some of my posts have been described as scary...

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    Here's some contact info for all those interested in sending emails or letters:

    [email protected]

    Honourable Lyle Oberg (PC)
    Minister of Finance
    #408 Legislature Building
    10800 97 Avenue
    Edmonton, AB
    Canada T5K 2B6
    Phone: (780) 427-8809
    Fax: (780) 428-1341
    [email protected]


    Honourable Luke Ouellette (PC)
    Minister of Infrastructure and Transportation
    #320 Legislature Building
    10800 - 97 Avenue
    Edmonton, AB
    Canada T5K 2B6
    Phone: (780) 427-2080
    Fax: (780) 422-2722
    [email protected]


    Honourable Ed Stelmach (PC)
    Premier of Alberta
    307 Legislature Building
    10800 97 Avenue
    Edmonton, AB
    Canada T5K 2B6
    Phone: (780) 427-2251
    Fax: (780) 427-1349
    [email protected]

  3. #103
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    Quote Originally Posted by dwells



    Failure 101 or not, someone has to temporarily step away from the table. If not the RAM, then whose project should have lower priority?

    As a discussion point, would we be agreeable that for any non-essential public construction projects we should set a threshold such as, maybe, a certain percentage of vacancy in residential and office space or a specified unemployment rate before we demand that construction go ahead without any further excuses.
    I would agree that someone has to temporarily step away, so why does it ALWAYS have to be public projects like museums, roads, and schools? Let's face it, we (the world) are NOT going to stop suckling from the teat that is fossil fuels for at least 2-3 more generations. Gas could be $10 per gallon, and people will still burn fossil fuels. Eco-protocol du jour could come in, and fossil fuels will be there. There are simply too many jobs, dollars, and too huge of an established distribution network to think that oil is going away soon. Minimized in many areas, yes. Removed, no. Not until we've finally exhausted the resources to such a point that it makes economic sense, and there is no political will yet to completely eliminate fossil fuels....government revenues suckle from the same teat....

    That means there is really no uber rush to build the next upgrader or build 6 at the same time. All that we are doing is providing that CEO with another project to get more revenue faster so that the my pee pee is bigger than your pee pee yacht contest can continue. So, hello province, control the expansion as you own the resources. Slip in a museum here and an overpass there while ensuring sustainable growth -OR- placate campaign contributing CEO and approve project.

    As for the proposal, define non essential...
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  4. #104
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    Shows the value the province places on culture…

    Even though I have concerns about the design of the museum, I am shocked at this news. I would have been happy to see this project go ahead.

    On the other hand, should we reopen the debate about building the new museum on the Legislature grounds? Perhaps turn the old museum into a natural history museum and move everything else into a grand new facility?

    Imagine a Ghery replacing the Terrace Building. Now that would be an architectural statement.

  5. #105

    Default Re: RAM renos on hold

    Quote Originally Posted by dwells
    The project is not canceled, it is only delayed, so relax people.
    With Cohos' past record of cost-cutting designs, you want me to relax? www.justnotgonnahappen.com

  6. #106

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    Quote Originally Posted by travis
    ^Who the heck wants to go to a human rights museum anyways?
    People that like to dwell on misery?

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    Quote Originally Posted by BDavidson
    \

    On the other hand, should we reopen the debate about building the new museum on the Legislature grounds? Perhaps turn the old museum into a natural history museum and move everything else into a grand new facility?

    Imagine a Ghery replacing the Terrace Building. Now that would be an architectural statement.
    A silver lining...?
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  8. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by RichardS
    I would agree that someone has to temporarily step away, so why does it ALWAYS have to be public projects like museums, roads, and schools? Let's face it, we (the world) are NOT going to stop suckling from the teat that is fossil fuels for at least 2-3 more generations. Gas could be $10 per gallon, and people will still burn fossil fuels. Eco-protocol du jour could come in, and fossil fuels will be there. There are simply too many jobs, dollars, and too huge of an established distribution network to think that oil is going away soon. Minimized in many areas, yes. Removed, no. Not until we've finally exhausted the resources to such a point that it makes economic sense, and there is no political will yet to completely eliminate fossil fuels....government revenues suckle from the same teat....

    That means there is really no uber rush to build the next upgrader or build 6 at the same time. All that we are doing is providing that CEO with another project to get more revenue faster so that the my pee pee is bigger than your pee pee yacht contest can continue. So, hello province, control the expansion as you own the resources. Slip in a museum here and an overpass there while ensuring sustainable growth -OR- placate campaign contributing CEO and approve project.
    I must be missing something here. You usually make sense to me but I can't follow your argument here, Richard. I totally agree with you and others in this thread that we can afford to build the museum, but I also agree with the province that because of the labor shortage, it would be wise to wait.

    Cost is not a factor and neither is oil revenue. But, referring to your argument, can we afford to tell your hypothetical CEO that his upgrader (that will provide hundreds or thousands of jobs in several years) will have to wait because we have dibs on the manpower and want to build a (PC legacy) museum today?

  9. #109

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    Raise the royalty rate. Slow things down a titch, and get more money put in Albertans pockets so we can afford Museums. This is a no-brainer.

  10. #110
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    /\ agree. the biggest backlash the government will face if they don't do the above (as they have promised during the leadership campaign).

  11. #111
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    Albertan's own the Oil Sands, if there comes a time where the massive growth begins to hurt the prosperity of Albertan's, than its time to slow down the growth.
    Its like any business, we have to manage our resource in the best way for Albertan's not for the oil companies.
    That is NOT to say running ragged over the oil industry, but rather being smarter and actually planning about royalties, approvals and working with the industry to make growth far more manageable.

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    I also agree that the royalty rates need to be raised.

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    I've just emerged from my soundproof booth... I mean, my self imposed exile... I mean, I came home from work early cuz winter won't end and it sux.. and now... to learn of this... Nooo my god... Actually I'm in favor of the delay... the postponement... the cancelation? Well not that.

    Look over here http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum...pic.php?t=1324 at the original announcement of the new RAM plans. That was met with far less than overwhelming approval. In fact what was presented was $400 million dollars worth of mediocrity. Someone took our candy away? I'm feeling better already

    Here's a portion of one old post from BDavidson

    Posted: Fri Nov 17, 2006 2:41 pm

    As the proponents stated in their own words, "Our province is putting more into this museum project than any province has put into any museum project in the history of the country," . So what is the excuse for this mess?
    ...exactly...


    Some here know, I've been working on an alternative plan for the RAM. It's taking too long of course, and this latest news throws another wrench in the works but I figure I can roll with it at least as well as cohos can. Of course they are still the insiders though.

    Apparently, the 'expensive' underground parkade, one of the better features of the new RAM, is largely to blame for the postponement. This is unfortunate because cohos generally seems to do a fairly good job with the mechanics of their projects, It's the esthetics that are all too often not exemplary.

    Richard and others above are right, the province doesn't have it's priorities straight [slowing growth and raising royalties would be a start], but I think for now we should try look at this as an opportunity to get something better than what was originally proposed. Not necessarily a Gehry. We're already getting a virtual Gehry at AGA and his latest stuff is just rehashing old works. He's past it, in other words. Anyway, it would seem we can't even afford cohos so how can we afford him?

    As for big public projects such as museums and galleries. How about no more than one at a time, during the boom times. AGA got the jump in this case. Really king ralph had a rare moment of lucidity when he said last October "The best time to build is during a recession or a depression. That's when you get the best possible prices." But we already had the slowdown in the 90's and ralph built what?

    Myself and others have mentioned previously that we felt this project should be rethought, and I saw this coming to some degree. Hold off on writing your MLA in protest. Wait to see my idea Maybe about ten days

  14. #114

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    You an architect?

  15. #115
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    Nope... but what's apparent to me is that I'm a visionary. People seemed to like the Whitemud Station idea quite a bit. This is bigger, and involves more than just the museum. Don't ask for an explanation yet. At any rate... as mentioned above... I'll be putting my money where my mouth is soon enough

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    Quote Originally Posted by uberurban
    Nope... but what's apparent to me is that I'm a visionary. People seemed to like the Whitemud Station idea quite a bit. This is bigger, and involves more than just the museum. Don't ask for an explanation yet. At any rate... as mentioned above... I'll be putting my money where my mouth is soon enough.
    I really liked your Whitemud Station idea. I'm looking forward to seeing what you have in store for the RAM.

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    Thanks E-town. I should add one caveat however, which is that I'm a big idea visionary. I used to dwell on utopian dream cities when I was a kid. I've been able to turn down the grandeur knob since then, but we shall see whether the city, its citizens and the province can come up to my level in light of the current situation. I am unable to stoop to the depths where bland mediocrity and most of what currently abounds here lay

    Before posting the Whitemud Station idea, I wondered if people would really appreciate it or not. Everyone who commented, did, so that's a good sign.

  18. #118
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    To whoever made this decision:

  19. #119
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    Quote Originally Posted by uberurban
    Wait to see my idea Maybe about ten days
    Hopefully you'll come up with something better than the enormous mastodon tusks.

  20. #120

    Default Don't stop museum work

    Don't stop museum work

    The Edmonton Journal
    Published: Friday, April 20, 2007


    Re: "Museum expansion on hold," by Paula Simons, The Journal, April 19.

    Paula wrote one of my favourite columns on March 11, 2006, that started with, "Remember that bumper sticker from the 1980s? The one that read 'Please god, send us another boom, and this time I promise not to p**s it all away'? Maybe your do. Or maybe you don't."

    Well I remember both the column and the bumper sticker. And now I see us lined up at the same d**n urinal yet again. If we can't afford to build these things for our children now, then when?


    Ken Cantor, Edmonton

    --30--

  21. #121

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    ^ Thank you Ken for taking the time to write the letter and caring hopefully action equals change.

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    http://www.edmontonsun.com/News/Colu...0/4078994.html

    DEFERRED & DELAYED

    The situation with the Royal Alberta Museum isn't quite as dire as reported elsewhere yesterday.

    Yes, the plan to do the $200 million government project in one fell swoop is off the table, thanks to sky-rocketing (Alberta-style) costs to $296 million.

    Back to the drawing table, says project spokesman Anne Douglas. The plan will be broken down in chunks.

    The two new exhibition halls should still get underway this year, says Douglas.

    But the $30 million, 300-stall underground parkade isn't going to happen until the province feels like it.

    And as for the renovation of the existing building, vague enough at the unveiling last year, God knows how long before that emerges as a reality.

    So we should (theoretically) get the museum's two new halls and some landscaping in a couple of years.

    On-site parking will be a dog's breakfast until such time as the underground parkade gets built.

    And maybe the reno of the existing building will be a provincial 150th anniversary project?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey
    And maybe the reno of the existing building will be a provincial 150th anniversary project?
    ...and this is the worry...phase never.
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  24. #124

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    I thought the parking was to go underneath the extension. Doesn't the parkade need to be built first?

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    well said ken
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    Which is why I am concerned. 1+1 is not equalling even 11, let alone 2 here...
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    Quote Originally Posted by travis
    To whoever made this decision:
    The answer to your question is just sooooooooo obvious: uncultured farm hicks in the Stelmach cabinet.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EdmTrekker
    Quote Originally Posted by travis
    To whoever made this decision:
    The answer to your question is just sooooooooo obvious: uncultured farm hicks in the Stelmach cabinet.
    EdmTrekker,

    I am not one to hold back my criticisms when I think they are warranted. I am also not one to refuse to "defend" my own positions and am happy to do both these things here and elsewhere under my own name.

    I consider myself lucky enough to have met some of the members of "the Stelmach cabinet". I also consider myself lucky enough to have met the Premier on a number of occasions. I do not agree with all of their decisions but some of these people are some of the brightest, hardest working and dedicated Albertans you could hope to have in government.

    If you are trying to identify a "just sooooooooo obvious uncultured farm hick" perhaps you should pick up a mirror the next time you go shopping.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EdmTrekker
    The answer to your question is just sooooooooo obvious: uncultured farm hicks in the Stelmach cabinet.
    Woah, woah, woah.

    While some of them may have played a factor, let's not paint them all with the same brush. Some of us rural folks appreciate the arts very greatly.

    My family was very involved in a town-wide push to build the Stettler performing arts centre back in the 1980s, which remains one of the better arts facilities I've seen in communities of around 5k people.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MylesC
    Some of us rural folks appreciate the arts (...) greatly.
    amen
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  31. #131

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    Gov't wrong to shelve museum

    The Edmonton Journal
    Published: Sunday, April 22, 2007


    Re: "Museum expansion on hold: Province won't cover rising cost of Edmonton centennial project," by Paula Simons, April 19.

    Paula Simons has hit the mark again. The interruption of the reconstruction of the Royal Alberta Museum is no less than a disgrace. This move signals that Premier Ed Stelmach's new government is insensitive to funding the cultural needs of our maturing province.

    During Alberta's centennial year, the Klein government acknowledged the need for perpetuating our legacy. In doing so, it at least accomplished a handful of projects including the building of a new Provincial Archives of Alberta, the retrofitting of the Jubilee auditoriums and the restoration of Lougheed House in Calgary.

    The museum project was to be one of the most ambitious and perhaps most needed centennial gifts in the birthday box. One which would ensure a place for Alberta's history for the future.

    Now, there is an order to redefine the well-designed scheme, which is dependent on the use of underground parking to maximize its extraordinary site. Without this specific solution, much of the site will be needed for surface parking. There will be literally no room to expand and showcase the depth of the collections of the Royal Alberta Museum.

    It is alarming that the vision of the RAM can be torn apart so quickly after so many years of planning and development. There should be no struggle to bring this project forward to its grandest vision.

    The government's interruption is unacceptable. If we can't build this museum now when our coffers are full, what kind of legacy will our children discover in the future? Perhaps someday history school trips will take children to the ha0llowed halls of dormant upgraders, instead of a distinguished and thriving provincial museum.

    Marianne Fedori, Edmonton

    Boom and bust

    Maybe it's the weather, but more likely it's the story about the Royal Alberta Museum expansion being put on hold that makes me a disgruntled Albertan today.

    I am living in the booming city of Edmonton in the booming province of Alberta, and I can't think of any good thing the boom has done for me.

    I can think of many things that have worsened during the boom, though. Less service at stores, longer waits for tradespeople, more expensive housing putting young people at risk of never being able to buy a home, high rents, more traffic on crumbling roads.

    I keep reading about all this money that comes into provincial coffers from the boom. Where is it? How is it helping to benefit Albertans?

    Maybe we should slow the boom and expand the museum. Edmontonians don't just need a place of beauty and interest, they deserve one.

    Adriana Strikwerda, Edmonton

    For shame

    The announced funding freeze for the Royal Alberta Museum is shameful.

    The provincial government cannot afford to downplay our history and our culture. The proposed renovations to the museum are essential to showcase Alberta.

    I hope this bad decision is overturned and the government respects its commitment to fund the museum expansion.

    Gregory Belostotski, Edmonton

    Investing in our future

    I am shocked by the government's decision to put the Royal Alberta Museum renovation on hold. To me this is another example of the government's long list of betrayed promises to Albertans. Why does the government continue to make grand announcements about future projects, only to renege at a later date?

    Building world-class cultural facilities costs money. Further delaying this project, or scaling it back, will eventually cost us more anyway. Construction costs are escalating, primarily because the government has approved too many mega oilsands projects, without considering the consequences.

    An investment in culture is an investment in the economic future of the province. We continue to hear about the shortage of labour and the difficulty of attracting highly trained and educated people. But we discourage these same people from moving here by not providing them with amenities.

    I suggest Premier Ed Stelmach advise the Queen of his government's decision and ask that the name be changed back to the Alberta Museum. There will be nothing "royal" left in it by the time his government is finished with it.

    Emill Spilchak, Sherwood Park

    No time like the present

    Some centennial gift we're getting. If we can't build the Royal Alberta Museum addition now, then when can we?

    I am outraged! Just when I thought we were making progress, one of the truly neglected legacies in the City of Edmonton is getting circumvented for some other political motivation that will leave us and our children with another lame and mediocrity cookie cutter facility. It's status quo again.

    I was able to accept the RAM proposal that would have seen it built over a number of phases, to recognize escalating costs. And now things have changed?

    This government has a lack of backbone and vision.

    There is overwhelming support for this facility to be built in its entirety as originally planned, and to accept the risk of escalating costs in today's economic climate. We can't let this one slip through the cracks.

    The RAM must be built as it was originally planned and it must not be delayed any further!

    Ted Letourneau, Edmonton

    Step up, Mr. Mayor

    To put a hold on the Royal Alberta Museum's growth is unconscionable, unjustifiable and unpardonable, especially in the year Edmonton has been named Canada's cultural capital.

    The Stelmach government must place Alberta's capital city on its cultural map. The enhanced and expanded RAM would go a long way to that end.

    Mayor Stephen Mandel has legitimate reasons to make the strongest argument before the legislature. He must represent the growth of Edmonton and Alberta in this growing, glowing jewel.

    Sue Marxheimer, Edmonton

    --30--

  32. #132

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    People's feelings on this decision seem pretty clear.

    I wonder if any of these people are sending their opinions to the government or merely to the newspaper. It's fun to see your letter printed in the Journal but it's probably a lot more effective to send it directly to the person in charge.

    I myself have just finished printing out three letters that I will be mailing to the three stooges. Stelmach, Oberg and Ouellette. If they were trying to avoid a backlash, let's make sure they get one now.

  33. #133

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    Quote Originally Posted by IKAN104
    People's feelings on this decision seem pretty clear.

    I wonder if any of these people are sending their opinions to the government or merely to the newspaper. It's fun to see your letter printed in the Journal but it's probably a lot more effective to send it directly to the person in charge.

    I myself have just finished printing out three letters that I will be mailing to the three stooges. Stelmach, Oberg and Ouellette. If they were trying to avoid a backlash, let's make sure they get one now.
    Backlash (anger) = action!

  34. #134
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    Quote Originally Posted by IKAN104
    People's feelings on this decision seem pretty clear.

    I wonder if any of these people are sending their opinions to the government or merely to the newspaper. It's fun to see your letter printed in the Journal but it's probably a lot more effective to send it directly to the person in charge.

    I myself have just finished printing out three letters that I will be mailing to the three stooges. Stelmach, Oberg and Ouellette. If they were trying to avoid a backlash, let's make sure they get one now.
    IKAN104,

    While I support your opinion on this one, I would caution that language such as "to the three stooges" does absolutely nothing to maintain the credibility of your opinion.

    And I'm pretty sure that postings here and letters to the newspaper are at least as effective as sending them directly. In addition to letting them know directly (and some sites and certainly letters to the editor are also "monitored" directly), posting and letters to the editor also put that opinion out in the public forum for further discussion, raising additional support and demonstrating by numbers to the media as well as "those in charge" the level of support and credibilty there is to some positions.

    Ken

    PS "Those in charge" can be a bit of a misleading phrase. They are not "in charge" in the same sense or with the same power as a king or a tsar. They are "in charge" in terms of delivering those things and services we delegate and direct them to deliver - it is up to us to prioritize those things and to recognize that we are the ones that bear the cost of paying for them (or in this case possibly doing without - there is a cost both ways). In that sense, we - and not "they" - are "in charge" as long as we maintain our obligations in that relationship.

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    This is funny. I think the journal has already received more complaint letters about this postponement in just a few days than it ever had in the last 6 months saying, in effect "bravo for the new museum plans". It seems Edmontonians are just complaining because they feel they've been wronged yet again by the prov. I wonder when someone will blame the Calgary conspiracy or global warming for this 'terrible tragedy'

    It's ridiculously expensive to get anything done in this city. Hasn't anyone noticed that. Of course the major fault lies with past mismanagement at the top, but some of the faces have changed. Maybe they're getting clued in. Whatever... that's a separate discusion


    I didn't go back and read it all but from what I remember of the original thread, some of the most positive comments regarding cohos RAM scheme were that it's "not all that bad" which it is, and "it looks like it will age well" which it wont. The reality is, the plan was to do a total hatchet job on the original museum and spend $300+ million on mediocre additions and landscaping. An artificial ravine? Get out there and look people. There's already three natural ravines surrounding the museum. We need a fake one too?

    Settle down folks... I'm here to save the day And I have to get back to it. Stop talking about this Someone lock this thread

  36. #136

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    Quote Originally Posted by kcantor
    Quote Originally Posted by IKAN104
    People's feelings on this decision seem pretty clear.

    I wonder if any of these people are sending their opinions to the government or merely to the newspaper. It's fun to see your letter printed in the Journal but it's probably a lot more effective to send it directly to the person in charge.

    I myself have just finished printing out three letters that I will be mailing to the three stooges. Stelmach, Oberg and Ouellette. If they were trying to avoid a backlash, let's make sure they get one now.
    IKAN104,

    While I support your opinion on this one, I would caution that language such as "to the three stooges" does absolutely nothing to maintain the credibility of your opinion.
    You're right. I shouldn't have said that. It was my frustration peeking through.

    Quote Originally Posted by kcantor
    And I'm pretty sure that postings here and letters to the newspaper are at least as effective as sending them directly. In addition to letting them know directly (and some sites and certainly letters to the editor are also "monitored" directly), posting and letters to the editor also put that opinion out in the public forum for further discussion, raising additional support and demonstrating by numbers to the media as well as "those in charge" the level of support and credibilty there is to some positions.
    Letters to the editor are fine if you want to vent or send a general message to the entire city. I've sent many myself. However, if you have a message to send to a specific person (or group of people) there is no guarantee that the target of your rant is going to read it in the paper and so you're better off sending your message directly.

  37. #137
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    BOOOURNS. I visit it regularily, I love it, and I'm more than sick of its half assed exhibits. Basically it's rocks, bugs, taxidermy and some native stuff (which is atleast newish and speaks of Alberta). I wanna see more Alberta stuff in there. More roaming exhibits. Now kinda seems like as good a time as any.
    Well behaved women rarely make history.

  38. #138

    Default Delay disappoints museum's 'friends'

    Delay disappoints museum's 'friends'

    The Edmonton Journal
    Published: Monday, April 23, 2007


    Re: "Museum expansion on hold: Province won't cover rising cost of Edmonton centennial project," The Journal, April 19.

    Like many other Albertans, the Friends of Royal Alberta Museum Society were disappointed with the news that renovation of the museum has been delayed until revised design plans are drafted and approved.

    We are thankful that the $200-million commitment is still in place, but are concerned the impact of those dollars is waning as time marches on.

    When renewal was announced in 2005 as a centennial project, a magnificent vision of a world-class facility was unveiled. It is our hope that that vision will not be lost to the crushing pressures of capital inflation.

    Culture Minister Hector Goudreau has indicated construction will begin in the fall. We look forward to that day.

    As a society, we are committed to doing whatever we can to support the museum. It's important though that Albertans demonstrate their belief in museum renewal. Albertans need to make it clear that a crown jewel museum in Alberta's capital city is worth every penny.

    Godfrey Huybregts, president,
    Friends of Royal Alberta Museum Society, Edmonton


    © The Edmonton Journal 2007

    --30--

  39. #139

    Default Restore museum plan

    Restore museum plan

    The Edmonton Journal
    Published: Thursday, April 26, 2007


    Now here's a kick in culture's teeth! Turns out the expansion of the Royal Alberta Museum is so low priority, even the Ed Stelmach government won't shove its pitchfork in the money pile to cover inflating construction costs.

    Think of it! At the very time the allegedly cash-strapped city of Edmonton has a committee planning fancy new digs for the Edmonton Oilers -- perhaps the $400 million sloshing out of the Alberta treasury for municipalities this year will help? -- the beautiful museum project is falling off the table.

    In unveiling his $33.1-billion 2007-08 budget, Finance Minister Lyle Oberg explained a key driver of the 12-per-cent increase over last year was the need to provide $1.3 billion for rising construction costs.

    But the museum is being denied a piece of that money. Instead, Stelmach's new Department of Tourism, Parks, Recreation and Culture has decided (no doubt taking prioritizing guidance from its name) -- that a 300-stall parkade makes the project too expensive.

    Presumably, it will either have to scale back, pave some adjacent parkland for a parking lot, force museum patrons to park in Glenora streets (which might not be a bad pressure ploy, come to think of it) -- or be delayed until some unimaginable day in which the province is in an even bigger mood to spend than it is now.

    Perhaps, as some economists argue, projects such as the museum could have been built for less if they had been planned and undertaken back in leaner years when material suppliers and tradesmen needed the work.

    But they weren't -- anyone who remembers why knows it would be folly to wait for another downturn. A new generation of politicians would plead a lack of money and demand that everything be cut.

    As planned, the expansion to the Royal Alberta Museum would be a stunning addition to a world-class city that wants and needs to do a better job of looking the part.

    It should proceed. And if we really want to indulge our regrets at rising costs, we could frame the original $170-million estimate, and make it an exhibit on the downside of being rich.

    © The Edmonton Journal 2007

    --30--

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    I am hearing that the Province has squashed the Cohos design - and instructed their museum client to send Cohos back to the drawing board for a much reduced scope and simplified design (to "fit" the previous announced inadequate budget). The whole concept of the project sicing down on the hill with river valley exposure may well be gone. IMO this will result in a really third tier city museum. Is anyone else hearing anything about this? Is this quietly being done with a planned soft sell/hard sell when it pops out?? Sounds like we need a lynch mop to meet with Stelmach...this guy and his rural backers just don't get the importance of building a true world class legacy museum for this Province. Must everything of substance be in Toronto or Vancouver?? Stelmach talks about cities and culture - and building this "great" Province - attracting world class researchers, companies etc. but what is he really doing?? He has cultural deficit syndrome!!. His actions on culture and the Royal Alberta Museum speak VOLUMES about just how small minded he and his government are - and just how much they really don't give a damn about this "Capital City".

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    I really wanted to like Stelmach, but I don't think I can. He doesn't appear able to see the big picture.

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    I think they may as well just start over and open it up to a design competition. We all know that a budget-slice-and-diced Cohos building will end up as a piece of crap like the Hall D wall.

  43. #143

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    I wrote a letter to the Premier about this and received his response back in May. I'm sure some others received the exact same response from him. I'll just paste in a few of the more relevant parts here:

    ...the Royal Alberta Museum project is neither halted nor postponed - the financial commitment of $200 million from two levels of government holds true. We are still planning a multi-phased project and we plan to begin on-site work this year, as we initially announced...

    What has changed is that we cannot sustain all aspects of the initial design due to escalation of costs... We are committed to staying on budget and that means...no longer building an underground parkade in phase 1...

    ... (we) will produce a museum that is both spectacular and functional...internationally-acclaimed...extraordinary visitor experience...centre of excellence for education...


    So based on this, I would say that rumour about going back to the drawing board could be true but if they are putting shovels in the ground this year then it's likely just tweaking, not starting over from scratch.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey
    I think they may as well just start over and open it up to a design competition. We all know that a budget-slice-and-diced Cohos building will end up as a piece of crap like the Hall D wall.
    Thinking about the point you are making - and my frustration with the Stelmach Government in funding the RAM, I was trying to find the right emoticon to post to reflect what this project will likely evolve into and end up looking like. Is there a calm person out there that can find one appropriate?

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    Quote Originally Posted by IKAN104
    I wrote a letter to the Premier about this and received his response back in May. I'm sure some others received the exact same response from him. I'll just paste in a few of the more relevant parts here:

    ...the Royal Alberta Museum project is neither halted nor postponed - the financial commitment of $200 million from two levels of government holds true. We are still planning a multi-phased project and we plan to begin on-site work this year, as we initially announced...

    What has changed is that we cannot sustain all aspects of the initial design due to escalation of costs... We are committed to staying on budget and that means...no longer building an underground parkade in phase 1...

    ... (we) will produce a museum that is both spectacular and functional...internationally-acclaimed...extraordinary visitor experience...centre of excellence for education...


    So based on this, I would say that rumour about going back to the drawing board could be true but if they are putting shovels in the ground this year then it's likely just tweaking, not starting over from scratch.
    We should hold Honest Ed to this, lest he lose any more urban votes.

  46. #146

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by EdmTrekker
    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey
    I think they may as well just start over and open it up to a design competition. We all know that a budget-slice-and-diced Cohos building will end up as a piece of crap like the Hall D wall.
    Thinking about the point you are making - and my frustration with the Stelmach Government in funding the RAM, I was trying to find the right emoticon to post to reflect what this project will likely evolve into and end up looking like. Is there a calm person out there that can find one appropriate?

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    Quote Originally Posted by IKAN104
    I wrote a letter to the Premier...response was:
    What has changed is that we cannot sustain all aspects of the initial design due to escalation of costs... We are committed to staying on budget and that means...no longer building an underground parkade in phase 1...... (we) will produce a museum that is both spectacular and functional...internationally-acclaimed...extraordinary visitor experience...centre of excellence for education... So based on this, I would say that rumour about going back to the drawing board could be true but if they are putting shovels in the ground this year then it's likely just tweaking, not starting over from scratch.
    I have heard that the concept of carving walkways of the museum down XX feet and creating vistas is apparently in jeopardy. It is also now unclear what the actual construction budget (hard construction dollars) is. The $200M (in 2005 Dollars) announced for the project includes hard and soft costs. That buys about $150M today – less since the Province is using a Construction Management approach to construct the building (versus seeking competitive Bids (Lump Sum). CM is always a premium – and is not more cost effective unless you have a cracker jack CM who can (potentially) self perform concrete work (an option). Word on the street is that this is not the case on the RAM project. That said if the actual money to construct the building (hard dollars) was $150M – what is it today? The letter said "we cannot sustain all aspects of the initial design due to escalation of costs ” $150M does not buy much – and the escalation meter continues to run – and I read (from the Premiers response) the Province is obviously not doing much to make this up. Given this is a LEGACY project for all time, one would think the province would ask itself “is the decision to build on the existing site, without parking (limited parking) still the best choice? and will we be constrained in building Phase 2” (now not possible). Perhaps it is time to rethink this project including options for (1) redevelopment of the old Federal Building into an adjunct Museum. Put a shell with curtain wall around the outside - open up the walls. This location in front of the Leg Building has ample parking, transit connections for bus and LRT etc. and (2) the Terrace Building location. Either of these would allow TWO museums - complimenting each other. To continue with a plan that is looking woefully inadequate – and with no future development potential is folly. To be known as the Stelmach Foley.

  48. #148

    Default

    I agree that a "legacy project" should never suffer from a lack of funding. Especially not in this province, not during this boom.

    If we're going to end up with a half-assed effort here it will be very dissapointing, frustrating and embarassing.

    I say "go hard or go home".

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    ^

    Especially because the Prov. Museum is one of the most beautiful buildings just the way it is.

    I agree.

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    Quote Originally Posted by luxbeauty
    ^

    Especially because the Prov. Museum is one of the most beautiful buildings just the way it is.

    I agree.
    Although a residential conversion might be able to retain more of it than what was initially proposed and would certainly be less disruptive to the community for the next 100 years...

    And then the museum could retain a single top of bank location by taking over the edge left when the Terrace Buildiing is demolished...

    Hey, a guy can dream...

  51. #151

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    I don't want anything above ground after the Terrace gets demolished. Now, if we were to make a building to bridge over River Valley Rd, with a green roof, stepping down to a café on the river, then I'd be 1000% behind you.

  52. #152

    Default Museum's delay offers an opportunity

    Museum's delay offers an opportunity

    The Edmonton Journal
    Published: July 08, 2007 2:20 am


    Isn't it time for sober second thought regarding the Royal Alberta Museum Centennial Legacy project?

    Since it was announced in 2003, construction costs have escalated substantially. It would seem likely that, without additional funding, the project will need to be called back.

    Fortunately, the city and province are delaying certain projects due to escalating costs. Governments usually schedule some major construction priorities in times of a downturn in the economy.

    While we need major facilities, it makes good sense to utilize such construction to cushion any recession and reduce unemployment.

    The provincial museum is a good example.

    While a new museum is long overdue, it is one facility whose construction can be delayed. The delay would also provide time for further thought as to its magnitude and especially its location.

    A true Alberta legacy can be created if we proceed in the right way.

    How much more attractive and convenient it would be to locate the new structure in or near government centre.

    The Terrace Building on the legislature grounds has reached the end of its lifetime, as has the 105th Street power plant.

    What a wonderful addition to the city would an impressive, stand-alone, more accessible museum be in either of these locations.

    Harry Hole,
    Edmonton


    © The Edmonton Journal 2007

    -30-

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    I spoke with an MLA about this one yesterday. Sounds like they're thinking about a new facility down by the Leg.

    I suggested that you could build a new facility there and keep the original building as a second facility for whatever kind of sub-collection could go there. It's not like between the RAM and UofA and City it wouldn't be able to be filled with a good collection, after all.

    I really love the original building and still stand by my feelings that the renovations of the proposed phase II would have completely destroyed the architectural integrity of the design.
    LA today, Athens tomorrow. I miss E-town.

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    Instead of the Terrace, how about the Federal building instead?
    The Terrace should be levelled and a promenade built in its place that will eventually link to the Rossdale plant.
    If there's ever a good excuse to get an interior renovation of the Fed done, it would be a RAM.

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    The Federal building would make a crap-tacular museum....
    LA today, Athens tomorrow. I miss E-town.

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    Why?

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    Too tall and not wide enough

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    Quote Originally Posted by travis
    Too tall and not wide enough
    It could widened, encassed in glass - windows popped out - opening into an encassed glass wall (curtain wall system). It is connected to the LRT, a bus stop at the door - and the Leg. There is not a finer location and fitting resuse for this building.

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    Federal Bldg would NOT be ideal for the RAM. A highrise building is not designed to properly accommodate a museum.

    That idea gets a big thumbs down from me.

  60. #160

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    Museums need large exhibition spaces for oversize exhibits. A building built for standard office space will not have the height for a lot of exhibits. Other than that it's a lovely notion.


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    but what if we tip it over on its side?

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    the fed is a ridiculous idea...even with an addition...and for the terrace, i would much rather see a large garden or how about a urban park for downtown residents with activities for families and the such.

    the current location is fine...you can hop there on a bus from downtown very quickly or it is a short drive and the last design using the hill down to the river is a supurb idea...
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    OK tear down the fed building and put the museum there. Obviously the provincial government will never do anything with that building anyway.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Glenco
    OK tear down the fed building and put the museum there. Obviously the provincial government will never do anything with that building anyway.
    please god no!

    i love the fed...it is one of the more classic buildings in this city and we will not want to add it to the "we blew that up when" list.

    the fed will be either reno'd and filled with office staff or sold and reno'd for condos/hotel.

    i have no doubts about that.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glenco
    OK tear down the fed building and put the museum there. Obviously the provincial government will never do anything with that building anyway.

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    Smaller expansion in works
    New plan would add 80,000 square feet, shelve underground parking
    Archie McLean, The Edmonton Journal
    Published: 2:05 am
    EDMONTON - Building a new Royal Alberta Museum on the legislature grounds could cost as much as $900 million, more than four times the price of expanding the museum on its current site.

    According to departmental documents prepared last month for Hector Goudreau, Minister of Tourism, Parks, Recreation and Culture and obtained by The Journal, a new museum at the legislature on the site of the Terrace Building wouldn't likely be completed until 2015, four years later than an expansion would be finished.

    The documents also show the province has already spent $10 million on plans and designs to expand the museum at its current site in Glenora, west of downtown.


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    Font: ****Goudreau was unavailable for comment Thursday. A ministry spokeswoman said they are still considering their site options and are hoping to make a decision on the museum's site soon.

    Last fall, a pair of Canadian architects unveiled a dramatic 250,000-square-foot redesign for the museum. Then in April, the province quietly backed away from the plan, saying it wouldn't provide funding to match cost increases associated with Alberta's booming economy.

    The architects were sent back to their studios to come up with a more modest design that could be completed for the original project budget of $200 million.

    Meanwhile, the delay created an opening for a re-examination of the entire project. Many in Edmonton's cultural and business communities began arguing both privately and publicly about whether the museum should remain where it is or anchor a revamped legislature grounds. Goudreau himself said he was seriously considering moving the museum to the legislature.

    Still, a recent Journal poll conducted by Leger Marketing suggested almost two-thirds of Edmontonians want the museum to remain at its current site.

    Tory MLA Thomas Lukaszuk said previously that he favoured looking at the legislature grounds for the site of a new museum. But if the project would cost nearly a billion dollars and be delayed four years, it's just not worth it, he said Thursday.

    "If you have documents that show the costs would be significantly higher . . . even when combined with a legislature revamp, then I would say that's a valid argument against," Lukaszuk said.

    The documents suggest the architects have come up with a new plan that will stay within the $200-million budget. It would add about 80,000 square feet of gallery space and retain some of the former design's grand river-valley views. The museum would also get a new children's gallery, an "ancient Alberta" gallery and upgrades to existing galleries.

    The previous design was slammed in part because it included a pricey underground parking lot meant to make the best use of above-ground gallery space. The new one will likely include two new surface lots, which would add about 300 parking spots.

    Bruce Miller, the Liberal MLA for Edmonton-Glenora, said he is concerned about surrounding neighbourhoods being disrupted by museum visitors forced to find parking spaces on nearby streets. He favours returning to the original design, despite the cost overruns.

    "It's a quite outlandish," Miller said. "They cut back on what they were planning because of high costs, then float an idea that's exorbitant in costs -- that's quite a leap."

    The documents don't fully explain why the legislature option would be so expensive. They do say that a detailed review is needed to look at things such as slope stability and archeological significance. The review would take roughly one year.

    The museum was renamed in 2005 by Queen Elizabeth II.

    [email protected]

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    Quote Originally Posted by EdmTrekker
    Smaller expansion in works
    New plan would add 80,000 square feet, shelve underground parking
    Archie McLean, The Edmonton Journal
    Published: 2:05 am
    EDMONTON - Building a new Royal Alberta Museum on the legislature grounds could cost as much as $900 million, more than four times the price of expanding the museum on its current site.

    According to departmental documents prepared last month for Hector Goudreau, Minister of Tourism, Parks, Recreation and Culture and obtained by The Journal, a new museum at the legislature on the site of the Terrace Building wouldn't likely be completed until 2015, four years later than an expansion would be finished.

    The documents also show the province has already spent $10 million on plans and designs to expand the museum at its current site in Glenora, west of downtown.


    Email to a friend

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    Font: ****Goudreau was unavailable for comment Thursday. A ministry spokeswoman said they are still considering their site options and are hoping to make a decision on the museum's site soon.

    Last fall, a pair of Canadian architects unveiled a dramatic 250,000-square-foot redesign for the museum. Then in April, the province quietly backed away from the plan, saying it wouldn't provide funding to match cost increases associated with Alberta's booming economy.

    The architects were sent back to their studios to come up with a more modest design that could be completed for the original project budget of $200 million.

    Meanwhile, the delay created an opening for a re-examination of the entire project. Many in Edmonton's cultural and business communities began arguing both privately and publicly about whether the museum should remain where it is or anchor a revamped legislature grounds. Goudreau himself said he was seriously considering moving the museum to the legislature.

    Still, a recent Journal poll conducted by Leger Marketing suggested almost two-thirds of Edmontonians want the museum to remain at its current site.

    Tory MLA Thomas Lukaszuk said previously that he favoured looking at the legislature grounds for the site of a new museum. But if the project would cost nearly a billion dollars and be delayed four years, it's just not worth it, he said Thursday.

    "If you have documents that show the costs would be significantly higher . . . even when combined with a legislature revamp, then I would say that's a valid argument against," Lukaszuk said.

    The documents suggest the architects have come up with a new plan that will stay within the $200-million budget. It would add about 80,000 square feet of gallery space and retain some of the former design's grand river-valley views. The museum would also get a new children's gallery, an "ancient Alberta" gallery and upgrades to existing galleries.

    The previous design was slammed in part because it included a pricey underground parking lot meant to make the best use of above-ground gallery space. The new one will likely include two new surface lots, which would add about 300 parking spots.

    Bruce Miller, the Liberal MLA for Edmonton-Glenora, said he is concerned about surrounding neighbourhoods being disrupted by museum visitors forced to find parking spaces on nearby streets. He favours returning to the original design, despite the cost overruns.

    "It's a quite outlandish," Miller said. "They cut back on what they were planning because of high costs, then float an idea that's exorbitant in costs -- that's quite a leap."

    The documents don't fully explain why the legislature option would be so expensive. They do say that a detailed review is needed to look at things such as slope stability and archeological significance. The review would take roughly one year.

    The museum was renamed in 2005 by Queen Elizabeth II.

    [email protected]
    The Provincial government remains a joke.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DanC
    The Provincial government remains a joke.
    my views on the museum and the art gallery etc. are pretty well known so we shouldn't have to go there in this thread.

    their handling of this particular issue certainly still leaves much to be both desired and regretted but that's still a pretty big extrapolation DanC. ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by kcantor
    Quote Originally Posted by DanC
    The Provincial government remains a joke.
    my views on the museum and the art gallery etc. are pretty well known so we shouldn't have to go there in this thread.

    their handling of this particular issue certainly still leaves much to be both desired and regretted but that's still a pretty big extrapolation DanC. ...
    This is one of many issues that leads me to hold that belief.

    I stand by it as I haven't see the Provincial Government do much in the way of well put together policy for the last 2 terms at least.

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    So, any word on when a new design is due?
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

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    I inquired about having a wedding reception at the museum in early 2009 and they said that they are not taking any bookings due to potential renovations.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey
    And maybe the reno of the existing building will be a provincial 150th anniversary project?
    By that time, the RAM might be falling apart so badly that it might have to be demoed and rebuilt from scratch!

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    So far, the proposed concepts for re-designs look really really awful and mundane. Any new, expanded space has been cut way back. Most of the best parts of the original design seem to have gone - the gallery walkways and vistas towards the river for instance. Though there is some new exhibition space, it seems the already way outdated galleries are merely going to be given a makeover and re-used.

    Plus, all the necessary and essential renovations to the curatorial/storage areas seem to have been scrapped as well - or at least put on hold until the apocalypse - (storage is already inadequate - both in terms of space and standards - for the climate controlled needs of a modern museum - leaking artifact storage rooms, temperature fluctuations, noxious fumes etc etc)

    And as an aside re the "expensive" underground parking, no-one in the Stelmach government seems to understand that surface parking in such urban areas is a complete (and expensive) waste of resources...

    It's basically going to become a third rate museum that will probably need upgrading again in 15 years time...

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    ^absolutely PATHETIC
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanO
    ^absolutely PATHETIC
    oh, but on the bright side...EXPECTED!
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    I'm embarrassed to be an Albertan right now... not to mention sad to be one.

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    But they can say that we have filled the potholes......I never thought I would say this but I actually hope they lose the next election Ed has been a huge huge disappointment to me.

  78. #178

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    Really disappointing...may as well not do it at all if it's going to end up a cheap watered down version of what it could have been

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    Why be great when you can be mediocre and avg.

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    Quote Originally Posted by oscar
    Why be great when you can be mediocre and avg.

    Edmonton's official motto.
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    Ottawa-Edmonton-Vancouver-Edmonton

  81. #181
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    Quote Originally Posted by oscar
    Why be great when you can be mediocre and avg.
    Reminds me of my favourite quote from The Simpsons...

    ...if you don't like your job, you don't strike! You just go in every day and do it really half-assed. - Homer Simpson
    In favour of Architecture that is of our time and place.

  82. #182
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    Unfair comment to make when this is a Provincial Government decision and really has nothing to do with the city of Edmonton.

  83. #183
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doug
    Unfair comment to make when this is a Provincial Government decision and really has nothing to do with the city of Edmonton.
    apply it to alberta then too.
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    Ottawa-Edmonton-Vancouver-Edmonton

  84. #184
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanO
    Quote Originally Posted by Doug
    Unfair comment to make when this is a Provincial Government decision and really has nothing to do with the city of Edmonton.
    apply it to alberta then too.
    I did

  85. #185
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    although improving...we as a province, the wealthiest in Canada i might add, are simply not fostering enough cultural, educational, and institutional development.

    if we want people to move here for things other than jobs...we need to play catch up.
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  86. #186
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoMod
    Quote Originally Posted by oscar
    Why be great when you can be mediocre and avg.
    Reminds me of my favourite quote from The Simpsons...

    ...if you don't like your job, you don't strike! You just go in every day and do it really half-assed. - Homer Simpson
    Yes, and also this one from the Simpsons, with one edit of course:

    if theres a task that must be done
    dont turn your tail and run
    dont pout ! dont sob!
    just do a half assed job!
    if you cut every corner then its really not so bad
    everybody does it
    even mom and dad
    if nobody sees it then
    nobody gets mad


    its the Albertan way

  87. #187
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    I'll wait until I see new renderings first before I pass judgment, since the only source we have is just the one post here. But considering the architect's track record, I would not be surprised if this is the case.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  88. #188

    Default Royal Alberta Museum

    Cant they do something with the old brewery to turn it into a museum, rather than ripping it down which they will most likely do.....

    I know the standard commentary about "its not all old" but there is sufficient there to try at least to save it...

    Or better yet, why no fix up the old Fed building, now that would be a great museum in the Euro style......
    LIaB

  89. #189
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    The brewery should be developed into something. It would be neat to have some shops and food places in there.

  90. #190
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    I think there are plans out there for Molson's. I highly doubt that building is on the endangered species list right now.
    President and CEO - Airshow.

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    I would love to see what the options are on the brewery... could be very interesting (however the museum is not an option).

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    Maybe we could turn it into a museum dedicated to the art of panhandling .... or should this comment be on the other thread?

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobinedmonton
    Maybe we could turn it into a museum dedicated to the art of panhandling .... or should this comment be on the other thread?
    I don't see how that's related to either thread... maybe it was meant to be funny, but I guess it didn't quite come across the way it was supposed to.

  94. #194
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    The brewery already has a historical designation, I think.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

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    I think it should be turned into a brewery.
    City Centre Airport is to the sky as False Creek is to the ocean.

  96. #196
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    I don't see how that's related to either thread... maybe it was meant to be funny, but I guess it didn't quite come across the way it was supposed to.

    Note to self: Humour or attempts thereof are NOT permitted on C2E.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey
    The brewery already has a historical designation, I think.
    The brewery isn't designated. It is on the 'A' list though.

    I heard Anthem bought the brewery site last month.

  98. #198
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    Quote Originally Posted by bobinedmonton
    I don't see how that's related to either thread... maybe it was meant to be funny, but I guess it didn't quite come across the way it was supposed to.

    Note to self: Humour or attempts thereof are NOT permitted on C2E.
    Your attempt at humour was doomed to failure by utilizing the wrong emoticon.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  99. #199
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    actually no, it just wasn't funny

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    This Anthem?
    http://www.anthemproperties.com/people/ourteam.cfm

    The existing structure could not be cost effectively modified for use as a museum. (Climate control etc.)

    The Oldest brick portion is a no brainer as far as the historic arch. value but I wonder what will happen to the Fort and the Log Cabin

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