Nait eyes Blatchford expansion
The City of Edmonton, the province and Canada’s largest polytechnic are closing in on a significant land deal linked to the Blatchford project.
Mayor Don Iveson cryptically spoke about “protracted negotiations” between the city, Northern Alberta Institute of Technology and the province at Wednesday’s council meeting regarding “the opportunity for NAIT to consolidate many of its different campuses to a central location contiguous to their main campus.”
Blatchford, a 217-hectare eco-friendly development on the site of the former City Centre Airport which, once complete, will be home to up 30,000 residents, borders NAIT to the north and the west.
Citing provincial freedom of information legislation that prevents disclosure of information harmful to the business interest of a third party and disclosure harmful to the economic interest of a public body, Iveson told council he is unable to discuss the matter further in public.
“Once the transactions are complete, of course, we’ll be happy to provide more information publicly, but for now, negotiations continue,” Iveson said.
Iveson described the deal as a “market transaction” that is “a significant milestone” for both NAIT and the city and the Blatchford project.
He said he believes the terms of the deal “are fair and favourable to the city and fair and favourable to NAIT and the province that will allow us to work together to help NAIT consolidate over time on campus.”
In an emailed statement, NAIT president and CEO Glenn Feltham said the city and the polytechnic had email@example.com “achieved an important milestone,” but could not discuss it further.
“There is a tentative agreement on the broad terms that would see NAIT expand its footprint onto the Blatchford lands,” he said.
“This land would secure NAIT’s long-term future, allowing it to create a single, consolidated campus which supports growth. This is important for NAIT, our city and our province.”
No announcement date has been released.
NAIT President and CEO Dr. Glenn Feltham says the school is looking at Blatchford expansion.