Economic Development Update and Stats from Grande Prairie
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Horse Lake First Nation Breaks Ground On A Bio-Refinery

(Photo: Abby Zieverink / EverythingGP staff)
Horse Lake First Nation has partnered with BioEnergy Solutions to develop a bio-refinery, a first of it’s kind within North America.

The bio-refinery will be fully organic and self-sustaining, and will also create jobs and revenue for the nation. It will operate as a year-round greenhouse operation, which will also produce biostimulants for the agricultural and reforestation sector. This zero waste and zero-emission facility will utilize a vast range of biomass inputs for power, will harvest algae, and sequester emissions while producing biostimulants. The facility is set to be operational by January of 2022.

The plan is to eventually expand to have more greenhouses on the land and in the area.

To read the full story from Everything GP, click here.

Development Incentives & Grants (DIG) Program Now Accepting Applications

The City of Grande Prairie is now accepting applications for the Development Incentives and Grants (DIG) Program designed to provide a long-term benefit to the community by creating economic stimulus and support investment in Grande Prairie.

The program consists of five incentives that are designed for large-scale industrial and commercial developers, and residential builders.

Industrial and Commercial (Business) Incentives 
The New Business Development Grant is a 10-year Tax-Increment Rebate for new industrial or commercial business development with a construction value of over $25 million dollars. 

The Business Retention & Expansion Grant is a 4-year Tax-Increment Rebate for improvements to existing buildings or property that increase assessed value by a minimum of 25% with a minimum of $1 million construction value. 

The Business Revitalization Grant is a 50% matching grant to a maximum of $25,000 for demolition or property and building improvement such as painting, siding, large-scale landscaping, access ramps, or lighting that improve aesthetics, access and/or safety. 

Residential Incentives
The Residential Infill Grant offers residential builders a $15,000 grant per lot within the Residential Infill Area as identified within Policy 357.

The Municipal Fee Rebate is designed to encourage residential construction throughout the City with a rebate on all municipal fees to a maximum of $10,000 for permits within Engineering, Inspections, and Planning.

For eligibility and application details for each incentive, visit Those interested in applying, must apply prior to beginning construction or the permitting process. All applicants are encouraged to speak to the Program Coordinator prior to submitting their application by emailing


The average residential sale price on homes sold in the city in August was $309,443, a 2% decrease from August 2020. The year-to-date average sale price this year is $316,675, consistent with the same period last year. Unit sales were up 2% in August with 104 sales in 2021, compared to 102 in 2020. Year-to-date, unit sales are up 34% with 999 in 2021, compared to 746 in 2020. Year-to-date unit sales are also up 6% over 2019.

Housing Starts

Grande Prairie saw 5 single-family and 2 multi-family housing starts in August, compared to 10 single-family and 6 multi-family starts for the same period in 2020. Year-to-date, housing starts within the city were up 21.7% with 84 starts in 2021, compared to 69 in 2020. 

Regionally, there were 134 single-family and 24 multi-family starts in the first half of 2021, compared to 40 single-family and 20 multi-family starts for the same period in 2020.

New Construction

47 building permits worth over $6.2 million were issued in August 2021, compared to 77 permits worth over $3.5 million in August 2020, a 39% decrease in volume and 76% increase in value. The increase in value is largely attributed to an increase in new home builds, patios and commercial alterations, including a 3 million dollar renovation to Southside Safeway. 

Year-to-date, 440 building permits worth over $61.8 million in 2021 have been issued compared to 468 permits worth over $35.2 million for the same period in 2020 - a 6% decrease in permit volume and 75% increase in construction value.

NEW: The City’s Open Data Portal now includes building permit data. Click on the links below for interactive data showing permit details mapped out across the city.

2021 Data | 2020 Data


The region's unemployment rate saw a decrease from 8.2% in July to 7.5% in August. Provincially, the unemployment rate remained the same at 8.8%.

Drilling Report

473 Drilling Licenses have been issued in the Grande Prairie region so far this year, compared to 224 in 2020, an increase of 111%. Of the licenses issued to date, 184 are for oil, 281 for gas and 8 for other industry-related wells, compared to 75 oil,142 gas and 7 for other industry for the same period in 2020.

Completions are up 68%, with 490 completions to date in 2021 compared to 291 for the same period in 2020.

Overdimensional Vehicles
660 overdimensional vehicles passed through the city in August 2021, up from the 444 vehicles recorded for August 2020. To date, the city has seen a 10% increase in overdimensional vehicle traffic compared to 2020.  


Power Update

August 2021 settled at $82.86/MWh, representing a 102% increase from August 2020’s settle of $41.05/MWh and a 33% decrease from last month’s settle of $124.10/MWh.

The average price between the on-peak and off-peak for August differed by $38/MWh, resulting in on-peak and off-peak prices of $94.93/MWh and $56.92/MWh, respectively. August forwards traded between $98.75 and $120.50 per MWh.

For more details, check out TC Energy's Power Market.


The Grande Prairie Airport saw 10,571 passengers pass through its doors in July 2021, compared to 6,537 in 2020, a 62% increase.

The average hotel occupancy rate in Grande Prairie was 49.7% for July 2021, while the provincial average was 50.2%. Grande Prairie's occupancy rate was consistent with cities of similar size in Alberta, with Drumheller leading the province at 75.5% in July. 

For additional information on the travel and tourism industry check out the Alberta Tourism Market Monitor.



Lean Mean Business Machine - 3 Part Series
Hosted by: Business Link

Part 2: Rip the Band-Aid Off For Good: A Crash Course in Root Cause Analysis
Wednesday, October 13, 11:00AM-12:00PM
Register here

Part 3: Lean Fundamentals: How to Take Your Business to the Next Level, Now!
Wednesday, November 10, 11:00AM-12:00PM
Register here

5 Tips to Get Financing From Your Bank
Hosted by: Business Link
Presented by: Juliette Cruz, Senior Account Manager, BDC
Wednesday, October 6 11:00AM-12:00PM
Register here

Simplify Your Small Business Financial Plan for Your Product-Based Business
Hosted by: Business Link
Presented by: Carolyn Scissons, CEO, Finance Learning Lab
Thursday, October 7  11:AM-12:00PM
Register here

BDC Small Business Week
Hosted by: Grande Prairie & District Chamber of Commerce
October 17-23, 2021
View details here

Franchise Opportunities

When available, new franchise opportunities will be shared here.

Mr. Lube
For more information CLICK HERE
For more information, contact:

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Economic Development · 217 - 11330 106 Street · Grande Prairie, Alberta T8V 7X9 · Canada

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