Helipads. Film studios. Clean technology centres.
While talk of a surge in shootings continues to lead the daily media discussion around Surrey, mayor Linda Hepner used her annual ‘State of the City’ address to highlight some of the projects coming to her city.
“We’re a very different city than we were just a generation ago,” she said to a packed crowd at the Guildford Sheraton.
“In those days, we were really a bedroom community, a place where people slept but not necessarily a place where people worked. In the space of 20 short years, that important demographic has changed dramatically.”
Hepner announced the creation of a new “Global Innovation Zone”, developed with Kwantlen University, Simon Fraser University and Cleantech Accelerator Centre, along with a Children’s Safety Village, allowing children “to learn about safety in a hands-on environment.”
But the most outside the box proposal for growing the city’s economy came in her statements on helipads.
“Surrey is currently discussions with a consortium of private helicopter companies to create a network helipads across the city,” she said.
“We’ve created a demand for helicopter service between Surrey and other centres such a Vancouver, Victoria and Kelowna.”
A film studio operated by Skydance Media was also announced for the former site of Pacific Newspaper Group’s printing plant.
“They’re the people who brought us most recent versions of Mission Impossible [and] Star Trek,” trumpeted Hepner.
“They’re putting in five sound states to accommodate a production staff of up to 400 as they produce programming for Netflix.”
You can watch the entire speech here.