40th Anniversary of City’s Incorporation
On Sept. 1, 1983, the Town of Leduc officially became the City of Leduc. There were roughly 12,000 people living in the city at the time. Forty years later, Leduc has grown to more than 36,000 people and is one of only 19 municipalities in the province that has been designated as a city.
In honour of this milestone, we hope you enjoy this commemorative video that looks back on the last 40 years and ahead at what’s to come for our community.
Flashback at 40
An excerpt from the Leduc Rep on Sept. 1, 1983, reads: “City status is a stage in a community’s development – part of growing up. It is a reflection of the progressive and forward-looking nature of its citizens, which has always been a characteristic of Leduc.”
Join us down memory lane as we look back at Leduc in the 80s and 90s, the 2000s, from 2010–2020 and into the future.
Leduc in the 80s
Significant City projects in the 80s included opening the Civic Centre and building plans for new community parks, like Alexandra Park, that would help create the basis for many of the beautiful outdoor amenities we continue to enjoy in Leduc. The Leduc Hospital was upgraded in 1985.
- The ribbon cutting at the opening of the new Civic Centre in 1986 -
Leduc in the 90s
Leduc joined many other communities in Alberta in “facing the challenges of the 90s,” which was rooted in meeting the needs of a growing population despite reduced funding from the provincial government – a by-product of the fact that nearly 11 per cent of provincial funds were tied up in debt interest payments.
Not only did we rise to the occasion, but the community continued to grow and thrive. In 1991, the first leg of the multi-way was created along Black Gold Drive. We may not have known entirely how this trail system would develop but it was an important first step towards building inter-connectivity between the growing number of neighborhoods in Leduc. Today, the trail system is more than 80 kilometres long and connects to most corners of the city. It is enjoyed by thousands of residents and visitors each year.
- Paving the multiway around the Leduc Reservoir in 1991 -
The City was awarded an Urban Park Grant in March 1991 and City Council unanimously approved the Urban Park Master Plan that gave detailed development plans for Telford Lake, Telford House Park, William F. Lede Regional Park and a new pathway system. By 1996, Leduc’s population was around 14,000 people and new neighbourhoods began to pop up across the city.
- Groundbreaking ceremony at the William F. Lede Park site in 1991 -
Did You Know? The City considered building a tower overlooking Telford Lake in 1991. If constructed, it would have stood 55 feet tall and have been situated at the end of a pier stretching 131 feet into Telford Lake. The proposed “Telford Tower” caused great debate within the community; eventually the idea was abandoned because of residents’ concern regarding its size.
- Telford Lake in the 1990s -
Leduc in the 2000s
Y2K! As with many memorable dates in history, most can remember where they were when the clock struck midnight and the world was ushered into a new century. In Leduc, the city was focused on several significant investments on the horizon and non-profits/community groups began to emerge in greater numbers, adding to our overall prosperity and the high quality of life that residents continue to enjoy today.
For example, in 2005, the Performing Arts Centre was renovated and re-opened as the Maclab Centre for the Performing Arts. As a staple in the community today, the Maclab is a hub for live entertainment and numerous events each year.
- The Performing Arts Centre before it was the Maclab Centre for the Performing Arts -
Construction on homes in Leduc Estates, Tribue and Meadowview started, and we welcomed new families to the area.
- New suburbs started popping up west of the highway, including Leduc Estates and Bridgeport -
In 2009, the old Black Gold Centre underwent its first renovation and opened its doors as the Leduc Recreation Centre. It was ready to welcome hundreds of thousands of residents and visitors to our community for decades to come. Leduc Common was also developed, which made way for numerous businesses to open on the west side of the city.
- The Black Gold Centre in 2009 before it was renovated and opened as the Leduc Recreation Centre -
The Leduc Boat Club opened in 2004 and hosted the World Masters Games in 2005. And residents banded together to save the Leduc Grain Elevator, which was at risk of being torn down. Because of their efforts, the site was declared a historical resource and is now an important piece of heritage in Leduc.
- Residents band together to save the Leduc Grain Elevator in the mid-2000s -
The City celebrated its 25th anniversary of becoming a City in 2008. In addition to a strong focus on the growing local audience and interest in arts, culture and heritage, the City’s leadership of the day celebrated the wonderful people who call Leduc home for making it a community of choice where people want to live, work and play.
Leduc from 2010 to 2020
This was another important decade of growth for Leduc. The Civic Centre went through a renovation/expansion, a new library was built, the Alexandra Pool was upgraded, the spray park was constructed, and a new fire station was added on the west side of the city. In 2011, our Operations Building opened and now also houses the Leduc Transit system which was launched in 2014.
- The Leduc Public Library that we know today was built -
- Leduc Transit was launched in 2014 -
Oscar Klak Way was also named in honour of Oscar Klak who served on City Council for 14 years and as the City’s Mayor from 1980 to 1989.
- 46 Street in Leduc was re-named Oskar Klak Way after Oskar Klak who was Mayor in 1983 when Leduc was incorporated as a city -
By 2016, the city had grown to almost 30,000 people and was beginning to transition into a mid-sized city. From the perspective of responsible growth, environmental impacts were becoming top-of-mind with the development of key plans like the City’s Environmental Plan Phase I in 2012 and Greenhouse Gas Reduction Action Plan in 2020.
Did You Know? Today there are roughly 5,600 solar panels installed at City facilities, the first of which totalled 3,622 and were placed at the Leduc Recreation Centre in 2016 ahead of the Alberta Summer Games. In addition, there are 1,700 at the Operations building, 44 at the Eco Centre and 222 at the Protective Services building (on the RCMP tower). The solar panel project at the LRC was the largest rooftop installation in Canada at the time.
- Thousands of solar panels were installed at the LRC in 2016 -
In 2020, the City was thrust into the immense challenges of COVID-19 that would last – in earnest – for two years and have enduring impacts. The pandemic necessitated innovation to the way we thought, the way we worked and the way we plan for the future. It was a season of change that required us to efficiently and effectively pivot how we ran many programs and provided numerous services to the community.
That innovation strengthened community and business resilience in Leduc that we take great pride in.
Leduc today and in the future
Our most recent years have been keenly focused on recovering from COVID-19, financial prudence and making meaningful progress on significant projects that will open new opportunities for investment and growth in Leduc.
In 2022, the Province made changes to the Edmonton Airport Vicinity Protection Area regulation, which will help accelerate the strategic economic development in Leduc and the region, allowing for more business opportunities and economic prosperity. This has also allowed the City to consider and seek public input on updates to its Municipal Development Plan and Urban Centre Area Redevelopment Plan.
And, after much anticipation, the City reached two major milestones on the 65th Avenue Interchange in 2022 when the project became fully funded in May and ground was broken in November. The project will connect 65th Avenue and the Edmonton International Airport via an overpass across the Queen Elizabeth II Highway and is expected to be completed in late 2025. This critical infrastructure project will support safety and ease of movement of people and goods and help stimulate local and regional economic development.
The City has also recently approved important Frameworks, strategies and guiding documents that impact the social fabric of our community, including its approach to Treaty, Truth and ReconciliACTION, homelessness and poverty prevention, public engagement, cultural development and volunteerism.
After every municipal election, City Council approves a four-year strategic plan and so in 2022, Leduc City Council approved the 2023–2026 Strategic Plan, which will guide the work we do for the next several years. At the heart of the plan, and guiding all that we do, is our mission and commitment of People. Building. Community.