Saskatchewan is growing
Saskatchewan's economy has been growing so fast that railways can’t keep up with exports of everything from grain to steel pipes and natural resources.
Premier Brad Wall said the provincial government is paying close attention to this logistical problem.
“These challenges in terms of moving our products are not just this year or next year, we need to deal with this with a long-term view,” he said.
It’s the story of an economic boom - in Saskatchewan we have what the world wants - but getting our commodities from a landlocked province to markets around the world is becoming a greater challenge with record exports putting pressure on railways.
Grain farmer still waiting for pay-off from record harvest
For Saskatchewan grain farmers the phrase ‘waiting for a train’ takes on a whole new meaning when your yearly income depends on the railway.
The last time Const. Gheorghe Bacanu was sworn in as a police officer, it was in Romania in front of a huge crowd more than 20 years ago.
“It’s an exciting moment. It doesn’t matter where you do that. You never forget that,” said the new recruit for the Regina Police Service (RPS), minutes after he took his oath. “The police officer has something in the blood. To protect the people, to protect society. It happens everywhere in the world.”
A newcomer to Regina insists that Saskatchewan really is the place to be if you need a job, as the province continues to buck the national trend with the lowest unemployment rate in the country.
With the amount of office buildings in Regina's downtown growing the city's mayor remains committed to revitalizing the area.
Regina's mayor is glad more housing is coming into the city, even if the work that is being done is technically less valuable.
The city has been setting records for at least the last seven years when it comes to issuing building permits. But the totals for the dollar value of all the permits issued in 2013 is about $40 million less than the record $773 million granted the year prior.
Michael Fougere doesn't mind, noting that the number of apartment units approved went up by about a quarter from 1,585 in 2012 to 2,090 in 2013.
Growth is the only thing on Michael Fougere's mind as ihs city moves into 2014.
Regina's growing population spurred much of City Council's activity last year, according to Regina's mayor. That included continuing work on several items that had begun in previous years, like a new official community plan (OCP), the upgrades to the waste water treatment plant, and the Regina Revitalization Initiative (which includes the construciton of a new stadium).
Saskatoon's New Year's baby reflects a growing and diversifying city.
Bound tightly in a red fleece blanket, baby Sufyaan Mirza barely batted an eye as a throng of media cameras captured his first moments on earth. The bundle of joy slept through what was a momentous occasion of his parents, Yasir and Attka.
At 1:13 a.m. Jan 1, Sufyaan became not only the bridge city’s first baby of 2014, but also his family’s first Canadian citizen.
Regina's mayor will remember 2013 as a tough year that had the future of the city at stake.
Michael Fougere saw his first full year as mayor jam-packed with some of the most contentious issues and expensive projects in recent memory.
He said from the waste water treatment plant project to the feuding and negotiations with the RM of Sherwood, everything Council did this year was in service of growth. He said that's evidence that times have changed.
The number of people through the Saskatoon airport in 2013 really took off as an estimated 1.38 million passengers visited the airport.
"We have record passenger volumes every month in 2013," said Stephen Maybury, president and CEO of Saskatoon Airport Authority.
He said the number of passengers in 2013 is 4.4 per cent higher than in 2012, but he expects 2014 to break 2013's record.
Beside the growth in passenger traffic, Maybury said the airport is also experiencing physical growth through the $53 million dollar expansion project.