My year as East Village Resident Ambassador is over! The end of a busy, beautiful, life-altering year is, naturally, kind of a bummer. But mostly I’m overcome with gratitude for everything I got to experience in East Village and excitement about what the future holds for this neighbourhood. As I’ve looked back at the past year I’ve tried to distill my time as an East Villager. What does “East Village living” even mean? From my perspective, it can be summed up with three major themes.
I love hosting friends at my place. My go-to formula for a good time is: a sparkling punch + delicious array of snacks + people I like. Foolproof! The only downside is the inevitable scramble to tidy up my condo (AKA hide my laundry and mop the floor). Enter a solution: The condo lounge and courtyard.
Another historical building on Calgary’s original main street has been artfully restored in East Village. I think Calgarians are going to love how the St. Louis Hotel fits into the future of our city while preserving so much of the past. I was lucky enough to tour the building with Kevin and Mairi Nyhoff, the architects behind the reinvention, and Josh Sartorelli, CMLC’s Project Manager for Development. They taught me all kinds of things about how the old features of the building have been upgraded and enhanced for today.
Studio Bell is the first new cultural institution to open in our neighbourhood and brings with it signal of change in our neighbourhood, adding another layer to the experiences you can have here. Studio Bell has world class appeal, and its impact will really be felt right here in East Village too, when world-renowned artists, homegrown talent, music fans and school groups congregate here to celebrate, learn about and practice music.
It’s Canada’s 149th birthday on July 1, 2016 and Calgarians are throwing a huge celebration. East Village is the perfect hub for all your Canada Day partying. There’s enough happening in and around the neighbourhood to keep you busy all day long. Paint a maple leaf on your cheek, wrap a flag around you like a cape and hit one or all of these patriotic events on Canada’s big day.
Valentine’s Day is this Sunday and you haven’t made reservations yet. Hey, I won’t hold it against you. These things happen. But don’t worry! If you’re hoping to spend some quality time with someone you really dig but need some ideas, I’ve got them right here for you, inspired by East Village and our neighbouring communities.
I’d heard it was award-winning and had an inkling it would become an iconic part of Calgary’s skyline, but it wasn’t until I toured Studio Bell that I really got it. Studio Bell, a $191-million project set to open this summer in East Village, will be home to the National Music Centre as well as a stunning 300-seat performance space, three recording studio spaces, a new CKUA radio station, an education centre and classrooms, a Cafe Rosso coffee shop and the artfully restored King Eddy Hotel.
C-Square (short for Celebration Square) is an urban square built on a quirky piece of land in East Village that I’d never noticed before. Now, it’s an active, artistic public space that looks good day and night. The little plaza’s artfully crafted wooden benches, open spaces and veil of metal flags on 4th Street (Riverfront Lane) and 6th & 7th Avenues S.E. live right along the C-Train line.
This shared space in our FIRST condo tower is a major bonus of living here. It feels like my personal living space is just this much bigger. I've run into a neighbour playing euchre with three of her friends up here, and other neighbours working on projects or homework in the glass-walled meeting space.
We are excited to welcome Zoey Duncan, who will be documenting her experiencesas EV’s first Resident Ambassador over the next year. As a journalist, Zoey is accustomed to tracking down stories. But in her new role as EV’s social media storyteller, there will be no shortage of tales to tell. Today heralds the kick-off of Zoey’s 12 month Resident Ambassador gig as she moves into FRAM+Slokker’s ‘FIRST’. But settling into her digs at a brand new condo is just the beginning.