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Councillor's Column: Reflections on Cochrane Council’s Term

As we count down the days of 2020 and all the challenges that have followed, I think it may be a good opportunity to reflect on some Council term highlights I’m quite proud of, as well as some legitimate reasons for future optimism in the Town

As we count down the days of 2020 and all the challenges that have followed, I think it may be a good opportunity to reflect on some Council term highlights I’m quite proud of, as well as some legitimate reasons for future optimism in the Town of Cochrane. 

Our group kicked off year one of our term with Council Chambers live web broadcasting to allow for residents to have easier access to stay informed and hold us to account.  I think this small change to watch simultaneously from home or at later convenience anywhere, has been well worth the marginal investment. This led to immediate gains in transparency with our community and has paired well with increased focus on our social media engagement.

Beginning year two we spent some time drafting a Town of Cochrane Vision document to act as a road map for how our community will move confidently into the future. With an emphasis on parks and unspoiled public spaces, small town values and continuing Cochranes historical identity – I’m quite proud of the end result of this process. More information: cochrane.ca/2045/Cochrane-Community-Vision.

The Jack Tennant Memorial Bridge opened on time and on budget this fall. The project was the execution of previous Council planning and I was happy to play my very small part in guiding a project well done to completion. It marks the start of a series of long overdue roadway improvements that will soon shift the landscape of Cochrane traffic frustrations.

I was quite proud of our recent traffic plan announcement on Facebook Live last month. Alongside the Alberta Government and MLA Peter Guthrie, the group has found a path to leverage limited municipal funds for some very significant roadway infrastructure gains in our downtown core, highway 1A and multiple key intersections. The full presentation can be viewed by following this link: cochrane.ca/2115/Cochranes-Traffic-Plan.

Starting this January, Cochrane has a new CAO joining the team.  I am excited for this addition and the organizational efficiencies that evolved over our term. I feel our town is strongly positioned and I am incredibly blessed to work with a high-quality team at the Town of Cochrane; our staff do our residents proud every day and are our greatest asset. I have been extremely fortunate to have a front row seat.

Staring down our final year, there’s also many exciting projects on the horizon. Critical railway crossing connections, Horse Creek Sports Park, Fifth Ave Rodeo Grounds Revitalization, a long-awaited RCMP and Protective Services building and planning for our iconic Old Town Hall site, are just to name a few. Our Council Priority list outlining these and many more can be found here: cochrane.ca/298/Council-Priorities.

As we move into 2021, I’m excited for the remaining projects of this council term.  I want to wish everyone a very healthy holiday season, a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!  Please reach out to me anytime at Patrick.wilson@cochrane.ca with questions or thoughts, it’s my humble pleasure to represent you.