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Alberta Online Encyclopedia

Lloydminster Today (1980-present)

By 1980, Lloydminster was enjoying a steady increase in real estate development. Its population of 8691 in 1971 had risen to 15,032 by 1981. Lloydminster had a new airport built and the new industrial parks built in the previous decade continued to encourage industrial growth. This contributed to rising property assessments in commercial and industrial real estate. However, a sharp drop in crude oil prices and the installment of the National Energy Plan directly led to massive layoffs at Lloydminster’s oil companies. One of the city’s biggest losses was Sydney Roofing’s shingles plant. Furthermore, inflation and unemployment were high across the country, contributing to a general slowdown of growth.

Lloydminster saw very little new development until the late 1980s. Rendell Park School, an integrated school teaching children of all abilities, was built in 1987. A new hospital began development the next year. Construction of the Lloydminster campus of Lakeland College, a 12,450 square metre facility costing $23 million, was finished in 1990.

To save on real estate property costs during the recession of the 1980s, businesses moved out of the downtown to relocate on the outskirts of the city where land was cheaper. Thus, by the late 1980s, city council became increasingly desperate in its efforts to revitalize the city’s central business district. They promoted beautification, business development, better parking and sound infrastructure. Major downtown buildings were renovated while trees and flowers were planted throughout the downtown.

Lloydminster’s growth was modest throughout the 1980s. Between 1981 and 1991, the city’s population rose from 15,032 to 17,283. In 1996, the population rose to 18,925, a sign of a rebounding economy. Husky Oil’s Lloydminster Bi-Provincial Upgrader opened in 1992 bringing new workers into the area. Following these workers were retailers like Sears, IGA, Superstore, and Wal-Mart. To attract tourists to the area, Lloydminster’s Tourism and Convention Authority formed a committee to design a new border marker – a series of four 100 foot red towers, built at the junction of 44 th Street and 50 th Avenue.

As the 21 st century dawns on Lloydminster, the strength of the oil sector in Alberta continues to spurt new growth within the city. Lloydminster is undergoing a housing boom in the College Park and Parkview areas, as the city expands to the west. Also a box store retail area has materialized within Lloydminster featuring Wal-Mart, Staples and Canadian Tire. The city’s population, which stood at 25,523 in 2007, up from 20,988 in 2001, continues to grow as a heavy oil city, a transportation hub, and an agricultural base of operations.

References

City of Lloydminster. “City Profile: Population.” Retrieved January 13, 2009 from

http://www.lloydminster.ca/mission.html#Population

Foster, Franklin Lloyd and Alan Grant Griffith. Bordering on Greatness: A History of Lloydminster’s First Century 1903-2003. Lloydminster: Foster Learning Inc., 2001.

Lloydminster Development. “ Lloydminster Development.” Retrieved January 13, 2009 from http://www.lloydminsterdevelopment.ca/

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