The City of Lethbridge will investigate opportunities to attract more television and movie filming in the city. Trevor Lewington, CEO of Economic Development Lethbridge, provided a presentation to the city’s economic standing policy committee this week and sparked a discussion on the topic.
“We have had a number of successes throughout Lethbridge’s history but there is an opportunity I think to be more coordinated, to be more proactive so that we can maximize the opportunity,” he said.
Coun. Jenn Schmidt-Rempel initiated the discussion after a conversation with Lewington about filming requests.
“We do know that there is filming coming to our city and it’s happening. If we are losing stuff, we don’t know that yet because we haven’t investigated that,” she said. “We just know that there are queries and people confused as to where to send the queries to.”
Lewington suggested the city create a policy to make it easier to handle requests. He said investment opportunities for the city are nearly endless, but policy is a good starting point.
“We could put a working group together in terms of local businesses, local industry that could be supported [and] we could develop a targeted investment attraction strategy,” Lewington said.
The committee voted to refer the item to staff and have a report come back by its Sept 28 meeting. It will look at opportunities and explore possible strategies to attract filming to the region.
“We know they do happen in communities around us — I’d be more interested to see them happen here,” said Coun. Jeff Carlson. “It’s my opinion that at the moment I’d be really keen to see some budget requests around this. I hate to think that inquiries are coming into our community to the university or city staff or the chamber and just sort of not going anywhere.”