I was up in Edmonton back in July. I was up there for about a week or so. On days that I had to myself, I made it my goal to ride the Edmonton LRT. Previously, I never really had a chance to try it, so I was bent on doing so this time. Being a transit geek, this was only natural for me.
My plan was to get out to one end of the LRT with a DayPass and then make my way to most of the stations along the way. So I headed out to Clareview way out in the northeast of the city. This is where this transit journey begins.
There was not much within walking distance out at Clareview Station. There were two transit exchanges on either side of the station. Then there was the large park and ride parking lots. Beyond those were some 4-5 storey apartment buildings. Oh and a giant overpass just south of the station which offers a tiny view of the downtown skyline. However, it is quiet out this way if you are looking for that.
The biggest landmark around Belvedere Station would be the Century Casino. There are the standard bus exchange and park and ride parking lots around the station. On nearby Fort Road there are a few businesses and a collection of detached single family homes. Most are more accessible by car than by walking from the station.
This is where the northeast section of the Edmonton LRT gets more interesting and meaningful to me. Welcome to Coliseum Station and the surrounding Northlands. Northlands is the exhibition grounds for K Days, formerly known as Klondike Days. Northlands is also home to Rexall Place, home of the Edmonton Oilers. I was once a giant Oilers fan as a young child. They were Stanley Cup champions in 1984, 1985, 1987, 1988, and 1990. Oh the heady Oilers dynasty days. Good memories.
Then the last of the northeast stations before heading into downtown Edmonton is Stadium Station. The station takes its namesake from the Commonwealth Stadium next door. Edmonton hosted the Commonwealth Games back in 1978. The stadium is now home to Canadian Football League’s (CFL) Edmonton Eskimos brandishing their green and gold trim. This is also where I decided to take a lunch break at a nearby McDonald’s. I thought I’d let you know just in case you’re ever in this part of town looking for lunch.