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News Release

December 12, 2007

Bonnyville and Lethbridge Projects Receive Support

Tofield – Rural Alberta’s Development Fund (RADF) announced funding today of $813,280 to sponsor two new projects in Bonnyville and Lethbridge.

Funding support of the Bonnyville Affordable Housing Association will enable development of an innovative, affordable housing concept for rural communities. The model will incorporate green technologies in its design to reduce costs and be transferrable to other rural communities. Once operational, the Three Little Pigs Housing Cooperative in Bonnyville will build affordable, entry level homes for local residents.

The Alberta Terrestrial Imaging Centre in Lethbridge is being supported to build innovative land management tools using satellite imagery. Software development will focus on tools that can monitor rangeland and wetlands. This will produce information useful for land management research, planning and decision-making in Alberta.

“We are happy to be able to support these projects because they offer programming that is needed in rural Alberta. We look forward to seeing the results of their work,” stated Bob Clark, RADF chair.

“Rural Alberta’s Development Fund continues to provide valuable support to innovative rural initiatives,” said Iris Evans, Minister of Employment, Immigration and Industry. “These two projects will help strengthen rural Alberta’s economic and social capacity for years to come.”

Rural Alberta’s Development Fund is a not-for-profit company that inspires innovation, collaboration and growth across rural Alberta. It is funded by the Government of Alberta and is a key implementation initiative of Alberta’s Rural Development Strategy. More information is available at www.ruralalbertasfund.com

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Direct media enquiries to:
Godfrey Huybregts, Director of Communications, Rural Alberta’s Development Fund
1-877-940-7233 Cell: 780-953-0525


BACKGROUNDER

Summary of Approved Projects

For Release December 12, 2007

THREE LITTLE PIGS HOUSING CO-OPERATIVE
Fund contribution is $213,280

RADF’s support enables the Bonnyville Affordable Housing Association to develop an innovative affordable housing co-op model. The Association will work with industry to incorporate green technologies in housing design to reduce utility and maintenance costs. Community involvement will be sought in structuring the model, which is slated to be completed by the fall of 2008.

The co-op will be designed so it can be replicated in other rural Alberta communities. Once operational, the not-for-profit Three Little Pigs Housing Cooperative will construct and sell affordable, sustainable entry level homes to Bonnyville residents. The Town of Bonnyville is a funding partner. Other supporters include the Bonnyville Economic Authority, the Bonnyville and District Agricultural Society and the Municipal District of Bonnyville.

Expected results include:

  • A template for developing an affordable housing cooperative in rural Alberta that can be implemented in other municipalities.
  • Engagement of industry in implementing green technologies in home construction.
  • Environmental, economic and social benefits.
  • More affordable, entry level homes in Bonnyville for families with modest incomes.

Contacts: Vic Stapleton, Chair, Bonnyville Affordable Housing Association.
T: 780.826.3496
vstapleton@town.bonnyville.ab.ca

BUILDING LAND MANAGEMENT TOOLS
Fund contribution is $600,000

This project will create new tools to translate photographic images into information useful for land management research, planning and decision-making in Alberta. Software development will focus on building tools that can monitor rangeland and wetlands using satellites. Once in place, the software will be marketed to help sustain the Alberta Terrestrial Imaging Center’s training and applied research programs.

The not-for-profit Center is a joint venture of the University of Lethbridge and Iunctus Geomatics. Located in Lethbridge, it is the primary receiving and distribution station in North America for images taken through a special satellite technology called SPOT. Project partners include Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Alberta Advanced Education and Technology, Precarn Inc. (a business consortium), Western Economic Diversification Canada and Ducks Unlimited.

Expected results include:

  • Improved environmental management in rural Alberta.
  • New tools for land management research, planning and decision making.
  • Economic growth and educational benefits from applying leading edge technology and innovation.

Contact: Dennis Fitzpatrick, Secretary, Alberta Terrestrial Imaging Corporation and V-P, Research, University of Lethbridge.
T: 403.330.3310
dennis.fitzpatrick@uleth.ca
www.imagingcenter.ca