Recession? What Recession?


I decided to walk to work this morning, the first time in months. My route took me from Father Mercredi on to Hill then on to Fitzsimmons. I ducked through a right-of-way near the Wood Buffalo Housing units behind the River City Centre and finally found my way to the loop road. And that's where all signs of a recession came to an end.

Construction projects abound in the lower town site of Fort McMurray. Looking across the skyline, you'll notice the protruding peaks of varying sizes of cranes. In this part of town, in the area that was once called the "Prairie", buildings are popping up in every available nook and cranny, almost faster than you can blink.

One of the biggest construction projects sits behind Save On Foods and adjacent to Rona, a massive condominium project with retail space on the ground floor--the River Ridge Centre. I did some quick math on my walk-by this morning on one wing of the complex and counted about ten suites per floor times six floors above the retail level. I'm guessing the cost of each unit would be north of $500,000 which equates to over $30 million in housing units. Make that over $100 million for the entire development.

A prefab concrete parking structure is going up in one spot, while a commercial development rises just a half block down the road. I was walking to work at 7:30 am and I passed hordes of construction crews trying to eek out as many hours of daylight as possible to keep up with the work.

Recession? What recession? Fort McMurray is humming and there is no end in sight.

April 22, 2010 - 191.8 pounds, 28.3% body fat

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