Local film: “The Avenue”

118th Ave has been undergoing an incredible renaissance in the past years. And a local filmThe Avenue Movie – has recently been made to tell the story of the that transformation and to pose the question: “What does it take to transform a neighbourhood.”

The premiere is tonight at 6:30pm at the Metro Cinema – click here for more details.

Here are some words about the film from the website.

As cities across Canada and the Unites States are faced with the growing epidemic of urban flight, city cores are becoming a place somewhat of a wasteland. Neglected buildings, decreased populations, and increased crime, lay in the wake of urban sprawl and the lure of the suburbs.

For years 118th Avenue in Edmonton has been synonymous with drugs, crime and prostitution.  But now, that image is changing.  The Avenue exposes the heart of the people residing around 118th Avenue as they take back their neighbourhood through grassroots initiatives, leaving their community stronger in their wake.  This timely documentary highlights the Community’s struggle to have the infamous Cromdale Hotel demolished, a longstanding magnet for crime, and follows the growing arts emergence that has brought festivals like the increasingly popular Kaleido Family Arts Festival to 118th Avenue, making the area an arts destination.

But can they overcome the negative reputation their community is plagued with and revitalize their neighbourhood without falling into the pitfalls of gentrification?

This poignant film brings to light the power people have when they come together for change and the human need to connect and develop a strong community spirit.

The Avenue features Christy Morin, Founder of Arts on the Ave, and Chris Hayduk, Founder of C.R.U.D. – Community Response to Urban Disorder, as well as interviews with Kathleen Quinn, Executive Director of CEASE – Centre to End All Sexual Exploitation, and Jim Diers, Author of “Neighbor Power: Building Community the Seattle Way”.