The Edmonton Community Development Company is dedicated to catalyzing significant transformation in underserved communities and plays a pivotal role in achieving a community-centric and inclusive economy.
In our efforts to bring about this change, ECDC has focused its attention on neighbourhoods marked by a history of neglect, such as McCauley and Alberta Avenue. As we work in these communities, our mission is to engage and collaborate closely with residents, actively listening to their needs and aspirations while empowering them to lead economic and social progress.
Through our ongoing initiatives, ECDC aims to promote inclusive economic practices, including community-owned real estate, investment opportunities for the community, and the creation of pathways to home ownership in Edmonton’s central neighbourhoods.
Nestled in the heart of Little Italy, the Piazza was once a problematic strip mall plagued by issues such as gambling, drug trade, and a general sense of disorder. Recognizing the potential for change, the ECDC partnered with McCauley residents and formed the McCauley Development Co-operative to transform this challenging strip mall into a thriving hub for local businesses.
The ECDC has heard accounts from neighbours impacted by living near derelict properties and from tenants in these properties themselves, who’ve shared horror stories ranging from living with no running water to landlords renting out spaces like a bathtub or furnace room to sleep in. In 2020, the ECDC initiated an innovative program to acquire derelict properties, demolish them, and construct new homes for families. To date, all ten derelict properties have been successfully demolished, with several already transformed into new homes.
The ECDC purchased Wyser Manor, an 11-unit apartment house in the heart of McCauley. It was once a boarded-up, derelict property until the late 1990s. Well-maintained and operated by previous owners over the years, this 100-plus-year-old home offers affordable rents to lower-income tenants (some of whom are living off a pension or AISH).