Calgary City News Blog
 

Calgary City News Blog
 

  • Second year of taxi satisfaction survey results released 30 July 2015 The City of Calgary shared the results from a recent Satisfaction with Taxi Services survey today showing some areas of improvement over last year’s results. The City’s Livery Transport Services team will now comb through the results and work with industry to identify where more improvements can be made.

    The survey, conducted in June 2015, found 87 per cent of Calgarians are satisfied with taxi service in the city.

    “Recent media has shown some of the troubling aspects the taxi industry faces, but it’s encouraging to see that overall, Calgarians are enjoying a safe and satisfactory experience when taking a taxi in our city,” says Mario Henriques, chief livery inspector for The City of Calgary.

    Satisfaction survey results

    Calgarians shared they have four key factors that contribute to their overall satisfaction with taxi service. They are: the taxi driver; their experience during the ride; dispatchers; and value for money.

    • 94 per cent of taxi users are satisfied with the level of service they receive from taxi drivers. (similar to last year’s 93 per cent satisfaction).
    • 93 per cent of taxi users were satisfied with the vehicles – both the cleanliness of the vehicle and for the condition/maintenance of the vehicle. 
    • 82 per cent of taxi users were satisfied with the amount of time it took the taxi to arrive – up eight per cent from 2014.
    • 16 per cent of taxi users have obtained a taxi through an online booking system or app, although 40 per cent indicated they are likely to do so in the next year. Those who used an online system or app were 92 per cent satisfied. 
    • 81 per cent of taxi users are satisfied with the service they receive in calling dispatch for immediate service and 90 per cent are satisfied with pre-booking taxis through dispatch. 
    • 69 per cent of Calgarians are satisfied with the value for money they received during their taxi rides. 

    Improvements from 2014

    After the 2014 survey, The City implemented two new initiatives:

    1. New taxi plate licences were added to increase the number of taxis on the road. The 133 new taxi plate licences also came with the requirement they be in use during peak periods to help with higher demand. 
    2. The City also had bumper stickers added to every cab directing complaints and compliments to 311. 

    “The City’s role in the taxi and limousine industry is to serve as regulator ensuring customer safety, service quality and consumer protection. This survey is helping us see where our industry is doing a good job, and helping us identify possible areas for improvement,” says Henriques.

    “By lodging your complaint or compliment with 311 we are able to follow up on the complaints and also learn what is working through the compliments.”

    Lodging a complaint through 311 still remains low, as 81 per cent of taxi users indicated they lodged their complaint directly with the taxi company. But there has been an increase from eight per cent to 16 per cent in the number of users reaching out through 311 to share their experience.

    Next steps

    These results are just part of an overall look at how the city’s taxi industry is doing. Engagement will continue by talking and working with taxi drivers and brokers in the coming weeks. The City’s Livery Transport Services will also be looking at the full results to see where more improvements can be made.

    “It’s all about constantly improving for Calgarians,” says Henriques. “They’ve told us what they think of the Calgary taxi industry. It’s now up to us to hear what they are saying and look for ways to act on those suggestions where and when possible.”

    For more information on taxis in Calgary visit calgary.ca/taxi.

    Submitted by Jennifer de Vries, on behalf of Animal & Bylaw Services

  • City Releases 2015 Census Results 29 July 2015 The latest census data, covering a period from April 2014 to April 2015, shows that Calgary’s population now stands at 1,230,915. We gained 35,721 new Calgarians, making this is our third largest year of population growth!

    This is an increase of 2.99 per cent, approximately 3,000 fewer people than 2014 which was a record year for growth in Calgary.



    In 2015, we invited Calgarians to complete their census online for the first time and we're happy to report that over 86,000 residents submitted their census data through the new system. Thank you to everyone who completed their census online and even shared  we hope to increase that number.

    Census takers collected data from the remainder of households using mobile computing devices. With the online and mobile data collection, the need for post collection data entry was eliminated and resulted in more timely and better quality data.

    Accurate census information is essential in decision-making and planning for Calgary’s future needs.

    Specific results from the 2015 Civic Census
    • Evanston is this year’s leader in community growth with a population increase of 2,853. 
    • New communities along Calgary's outskirts understandably gained many new residents: Mahogany (2,300), Auburn Bay (2,064), Cranston (1,831), Copperfield (1,468), Saddle Ridge (1,219), Nolan Hill (1,173), Redstone (1,120) and Skyview Ranch (1,055).
    • Between April 2014 and April 2015, 24,909 more people moved to Calgary than moved away.
    • Natural increase (the result of births over deaths) remained similar to the number from last year, at 10,812.
    • The number of housing units, both existing and under construction, continues to rise, increasing by 14,400 to 492,623; an increase of 2.92 per cent.
    The Civic Census Results Book and data tables in excel and PDF format will be available on calgary.ca/census
  • Taxi bill of rights outlines shared responsibilities 27 July 2015 Safe and convenient taxi service is part of our commitment to keeping Calgarians on the move. The Passenger and Driver Bill of Rights outlines the shared responsibilities of both driver and passenger to help ensure this commitment is met.


    View an enlarged image of the sticker.

    “The Passenger and Driver Bill of Rights promotes a common understanding between passengers and drivers, each of whom have obligations during the course of a trip,” says Mario Henriques, chief livery inspector.

    "Clearly outlining both parties’ roles and responsibilities will hopefully reduce potential misunderstandings and improve the taxi experience for all.”

    Coming soon to a taxi near you

    By September 1, 2015, all 1,659 taxis currently operating in Calgary will display the bill of rights in their vehicles.

    “Safety, convenience and respect all contribute to a positive taxi experience,” says Henriques. “We work hard to provide this assurance through regulation of the taxi industry on behalf of all Calgarians – drivers and passengers alike.”

    Submit concerns online or through 311

    We are always seeking feedback on the taxi experience so we can recognize areas of excellence and address areas of concern. Please submit your comments, compliments, questions or concerns online through the 311 app or by visiting www.calgary.ca/taxi.

    Calgarians and visitors rely on the taxi service as a year-round mode of transportation and last year, more than 8 million taxi trips were taken. More about taxis and limousine services in Calgary.

    Submitted by Jennifer de Vries on behalf of Animal &Bylaw Services

  • Paving season is in full swing 27 July 2015
     
    As the summer rolls along so do The City’s paving crews. Paving is an important part of maintaining Calgary’s transportation network. Due to the short window for paving in the summer, citizens should expect some disruption to their commute during the summer months. To minimize traffic disruption, paving work is carried out during nights and weekends on major roads. If you are looking for more information, visit the Construction Detours map on Calgary.ca, or if you’re looking for information on a specific paving project, visit Calgary.ca/paving.


    How is a road selected for paving?


    There are many factors that are weighed during the evaluation of a road for paving. While some roads may appear worse than others, roads selected for paving are based on specific guidelines for road conditions and focus on those which require the most repairs.


    Among the criteria are the Pavement Management System, The Pavement Quality Index rating and annual visual and automated condition surveys performed on the roads. Other factors can include the number of motorists that utilize a road on a daily basis, and utility replacement programs.


    My road is scheduled for paving, now what?


    The rehabilitation of a roadway involves several processes, which can take up to eight weeks to complete. If a road is scheduled for paving, utility work or concrete repair may be required prior to paving. Gutters and damaged sidewalk blocks will be replaced to ensure proper drainage.


    Prior to paving, citizens will be required to remove their cars and will be notified via signs placed on the road at least 12 hours prior to paving. The street will be milled, manholes will be levelled and the road will then be paved.


    For a detailed description of this work, see our paving steps brochure.


    The City of Calgary would like to thank citizens for their patience during the summer construction season. Visit Calgary.ca/paving to find out if your street is scheduled for paving this summer.

  • Zero-parking buildings – the way of the future? 27 July 2015 On May 13, 2015, Calgary City Council unanimously approved the city’s first zero-parking condominium, a condo without any car parking in the building. The development, to be located in the East Village, will be primarily residential with street-level commercial spaces for potential shops and restaurants. Tenants are to be provided with incentives to choose alternative modes of transportation, such as car share memberships. This approval highlights a shift in new housing development and transportation choices for Calgarians.

    Zero-parking buildings have been appearing in other North American cities including Portland and Vancouver as car ownership is seen to decline as a trade off to other costs of living.

    With emerging shifts in travel choices, such as an increase in cycling and transit use, The City of Calgary wants to know if you would ever consider living in a building with zero parking. Please complete our short survey before July 24, 2015 and let us know what you think. Your input will continue to help provide a general indication of interest in zero-parking buildings.

    For more information on Calgary’s newly adopted parking policy and zero-parking development, check out the following links:
  • Federal funding to fast-forward Green Line to LRT 24 July 2015

    In a historic move, the federal government has announced 1.5 billion dollars from the Public Transit Fund will be awarded to the Green Line project. This is the single largest infrastructure investment in Alberta’s history. 

    What does this mean for Calgarians? 


    The Green Line was initially planned to be constructed over 30+ years, starting as a bus-only Transitway, and later converting to LRT. This announcement from the Federal Government means that Calgarians in the north and southeast areas of the city will be able to enjoy faster, more reliable, light rail service ahead of schedule. Currently, 290,000 Calgarians are estimated to live along the Green Line corridor, with thousands more working and visiting the newly developing employment hubs and community activity centres on the route.  The Green Line will not only bring transit into communities, but will connect neighbourhoods where Calgarians can live, work and play close to transit.


    Changing the face of Calgary’s LRT network


    The Green Line will add an additional 40 kilometres of track to the existing 59 kilometre LRT network. End-to-end, the route will connect North Pointe and Seton to downtown.

    Modeled after the existing CTrain system, which is 100 per cent powered by renewable wind energy, the Green Line will be an environmentally sustainable addition to the city’s transit service.

    Today, Calgary’s population is 1.19 million and will increase to about 1.89 million in the next 30 years.  It is estimated that the Green Line will service 41 million passengers annually.

    Fun Facts:
    • The Green Line will use low-floor trains which have similar capacity to current CTrains (780 passengers/3 car train), and carry over 8 times the number of passengers of an articulated bus. 
    • Ride times will be cut in half on the southeast leg of the Green Line with the completion of LRT; current ride times are clocked at about 69 minutes to the downtown core from the southeast; this will be reduced to about 35 minutes.
    • Calgary has the first wind-powered light rail transit system in North America and reduced CO2 emissions by over 56,000 tonnes in 2012.
    • 290,000 Calgarians are estimated to live along the Green Line corridor (including the Centre City and Beltline), estimated to increase to 465,000 by 2043.
    • Total city population is 1.19 million today, increasing to 1.89 million by 2043.
    The Green Line will serve a number of community and business hubs in the city:

    • Community Activity Centres

      • Country Hills – 2,900 jobs

      • Quarry Park – 8,300 jobs

      • South Hill – 6,000 jobs
    • Major Activity Centres

      • Keystone Hills – 3,500 jobs

      • Seton – 5,200 jobs 
    • Industrial  Centres

      • Aurora – 6,700 jobs

      • Douglasglen Business Centre – 2,000 jobs

      • Glenmore/Barlow Business Centre – 4,900 jobs 
    View the media announcement, July 24, 2015:

  • Avoiding tree damage during construction 20 July 2015 It’s important to remember to protect your trees before starting any summer construction or renovation projects. A healthy tree increases in value with age, so preserving your investment makes sense. Jill-Anne Spence, Urban Forestry Lead, recently chatted with Global TV to share some tips.

    Protect your trees with a fence or barrier.
    Some of the most common ways trees are damaged during construction are:

    • Harming roots while digging, grading or trenching. 
    • Injury to the tree with equipment.
    • Packing down the soil which inhibits growth and root survival.
    • Adding more soil which smothers the roots.

    If you are planning a construction project:

    1. Ask for advice: Contact a certified International Society of Arboriculture arborist or a company that employs them to help you protect your trees during construction. 
    2. Plan ahead: Work with the contractor early to have the smallest impact on your trees. There are many options from changing location to changing the method of construction to help your trees stay damage-free. 
    3. Protect with barriers: A sturdy fence should be set up around trees about 0.3 m (1') from the trunk for each 2.5 cm (1") of trunk diameter. Leave the fence up until construction is complete. 
    4. Limit access: Limit access of vehicles and machinery. Instruct contractors and builders where they're allowed to drive and park. 
    5. Stay vigilant: Often it is in the final stages of construction where damage to the tree's root system occurs. During the installation of irrigation systems, grading or planting bed cultivation, ensure the original plan is followed and the barrier remains in place.
    "Often it is in the final stages of construction where damage to the tree occurs." Tweet this

    After construction, good tree maintenance will help your trees recover from any injury or changes. More information at calgary.ca/trees.

    Submitted by Althea Livingston, Parks
  • Free dog training available through Off-Leash Ambassador program 16 July 2015 In partnership with the Calgary Humane Society (CHS), we are offering free events on recall training from certified professional dog trainers.

    Whether in an on-leash or an off-leash area, your dog needs to be under your control at all times for everyone’s safety. Effective training encourages positive interactions and gives owners the techniques needed to maximize desirable dog behaviour.

    Barbara Walmer, department head of behaviour at CHS, is coordinating recall training sessions at Sue Higgins Park on July 25 and Falconridge Park on October 27 to teach and demonstrate tips and techniques with Calgary dog owners and their dogs.

    July 25: There will be four 45-minute sessions starting at 10:00 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 1:00 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. There are only 12 spots available per session (no drop-ins are accepted) so please apply online to attend before July 21. Or you can also call 311. A draw will be held on July 22.

    These free events are offered as part of our Off-leash Ambassador program, which is a community-based program providing a volunteer-led approach to promote and educate people about responsible pet ownership and ensure safety in off-leash areas.

    Good animal behaviour requires a commitment to building a strong relationship between pet and owner. We are committed to working with and supporting Calgarians on responsible pet ownership.

    Visit us online to become an off-leash ambassador or view other events, or for more information on responsible pet ownership visit www.calgary.ca/animalservices.

    Submitted by Carissa Vescio, Animal & Bylaw Services

  • Planning Providence: Designing Calgary’s first "complete community" 15 July 2015
    As a city planner, citizens often tell me they’d like to live in a community that offers a wide variety of amenities and services, located close to where they work and go about their lives. Urban planners call this a “complete” community, and we’re currently planning one. 

    Situated along the city’s southwestern edge, Providence is bounded by farmland to its west, the Tsuu T’ina Nation to the north, the future Southwest Ring Road to the east and Spruce Meadows Trail to the south. Our vision for Providence is that it will function as a type of mini-city, such that it will be able to offer most of what a city can but within just one community. While most of Providence will be residential, its additional features will make it “complete” on a scale we have not yet seen in this city.

    Providence’s access to the future Southwest Ring Road gives us the opportunity to locate businesses in the area for residents of southwest Calgary to access. Currently, much of southwest Calgary is residential and many who live there have to commute to other parts of the city for work. In Providence, we are planning 300 acres (approximately 20 per cent of the area) to be dedicated to employment, which will create the opportunity for approximately 11,000 people to work in Providence. Some of the people who will work in Providence might live in other parts of the city, but many of the 32,000 projected Providence residents will be able to work in the same community they live in. The types of jobs we envision for Providence include a full mix of office, institutional, retail and light industrial jobs.

    Locating so many jobs in a new community in Calgary is something new for our city. Traditionally, new communities may be home to about one job for every seven residents. In Providence, we
    anticipate one job in the area for every three residents – that’s a vast improvement. Part of the reason Providence can accommodate significant employment is due to the transportation investments planned for the area. In addition to its direct access to the Southwest Ring Road, a bus rapid transit service is planned for Providence. The bus will run along the Transitway (a dedicated bus-only lane in the middle of a main roadway in the area) and will provide quick access to the Somerset/Bridlewood LRT station. Buses in Providence will also connect to the South Hospital.

    A draft land use concept has been developed and the project team would like your input.
    Go to calgary.ca/providence to provide your thoughts (click to expand image).
    In addition to the employment area, Providence will also feature new amenities for residents. A new Regional Athletic Park is planned that will include playing fields and a track-and-field facility, and may also include a field house and indoor soccer centre. We anticipate nine schools for the area, and residential density will be concentrated along a central corridor that will function as a “main street” for residents to access local goods and services.

    With the employment area, the Transitway and the recreational amenities planned for Providence, I’m excited to see Calgary’s first truly “complete” community take shape. 

    Learn more about Providence and have your say at Calgary.ca/providence


    About the Author

    Jill Sonego is a Planner with The City's 
    Planning, Development and Assessment 
    department who is leading the team for 
    Providence's area structure plan.
  • Protecting your trees from insects and disease 14 July 2015 Last September’s snowstorm damaged a significant portion of our trees. Damage or stress caused by the storm may make your trees more susceptible to disease or insects.
    The yellow-headed spruce sawfly.

    As well, this spring has been unusually dry, which can also compromise the health of your trees.

    Jill-Anne Spence, urban forestry lead and Jim Watts, urban conservation technician, recently caught up with Global TV to explain how to look for pests and diagnose tree problems.

    Watch the interview now.

    Tips to diagnose tree health problems:
    Inspect your tree. Early in the growing season you should inspect your trees for insects, disease or structural issues. Observe:
    • The size of the leaves – are they growing properly?
    • If the tree buds are properly sprouting.
    • The annual growth of a branch.
    • If the top of the tree, the crown, is growing.

    Know your tree. Many insects and diseases are tree-specific so identifying the type of tree will set you in the right direction.  
    Compare. Take a look at other trees around the same spot, especially those of the same species.  
    Take a look at the roots, trunk, branches, and foliage. Discoloured roots and wounds on the branches or trunk could indicate a problem. Check foliage for discoloration or damage. This could indicate insect feeding or other issues.
    Oystershell scale
    Dutch elm disease (DED) is an important tree disease to be aware of in Calgary. There is a provincial pruning ban for elm trees from April 1 until September 30. It is important not to prune elm trees during this period because Alberta is one of the last areas in North America to be free of DED. We want to keep it that way!

    Other pests to watch out for are: yellowheaded spruce sawfly; European elm scale; oystershell scale; and forest tent caterpillar.

    For more information on healthy tree care, visit calgary.ca/trees.

    Submitted by Althea Livingston, Parks

  • 8 Street S.W. underpass enhancements begin 14 July 2015
    July 15 will see the start of construction on enhancements to the 8 Street S.W. underpass between 8 Avenue and 10 Avenue to provide greater safety and comfort for users of the underpass pedestrian walkways.



    “Citizens have said that safety and cleanliness are the most important elements in the use of city spaces,” said Ben Barrington, Centre City Implementation Program Manager. “This project addresses these concerns by not only doing the necessary maintenance but adding visual interest through design elements and public art. We want users to see this space not only as a pedestrian connection but to also enjoy the interesting artistic and design features.”


    The 8 Street S.W. underpass was chosen as a high priority area to be improved due to the high pedestrian usage (8,700 pedestrians per day) and as a link between the Beltline and Downtown. It has been identified as a space that requires much needed renovations to provide users with increased safety and comfort.


    The 8 Street S.W. Underpass Enhancement project is an outcome of two City plans: the Centre City Plan and the 8 Street S.W. Corridor Public Realm Master Plan, and is the first phase of the 8 Street S.W. Corridor improvements. The scope of work includes design and construction of underpass enhancements consistent with the Master Plan, such as construction of new sidewalks, concrete surfaces, LED lighting, public art, and repairs and maintenance of upper and lower retaining walls.


    Crews will repaint the bridges and retaining walls in reflective white to make the area brighter, and will construct a public art installation between the two bridges. The bridges themselves will be cleaned and repainted but the steel girder structures will not change.


    The budget for this project is $8.8 million and substantial completion of the enhancements is anticipated for the end of 2015. Final construction elements (ex. landscaping) will be done in the spring of 2016.


    This project will result in some underpass pedestrian and road restrictions and closures. Starting Wednesday, July 15, the east side pedestrian walkway of the 8 Street S.W. underpass will be closed between 8 Avenue and 10 Avenue until the enhancements on the east side are completed. During this time, pedestrians will need to use the west side pedestrian walkway. One lane of northbound vehicle traffic will also be closed during construction on the east side.


    When the enhancements on the east side are completed and it is opened to the public, the west side pedestrian walkway (as well as one lane of southbound vehicle traffic) will be closed until those enhancements are finished.


    For more details about the project, go to www.calgary.ca/8stunderpass.
  • Major transportation construction projects in the southwest 6 July 2015 This summer, Calgary's southwest quadrant will undergo some major transportation enhancements around Sarcee Trail, Anderson Road, Crowchild Trail and in the downtown core.

    Sarcee Trail
    A new fibreglass enforced grid underlay will be installed on a section of Sarcee Trail S.W. The material is expected to enhance the life of the roadway. Major rehabilitation on Sarcee Trail S.W. between Richmond Road S.W. and Bowglen Crescent N.W. will include slope drainage and safety improvements; work will be coordinated with pavement rehabilitation. This is expected to continue throughout the remainder of the spring and over the summer. For more details, visit the project page.

    1 Street S.W. Underpass
    1 Street S.W. Underpass construction
    The City is implementing an underpass improvement program aimed at improving pedestrian safety and connections between the Beltline and downtown communities. The 1 Street S.W. Underpass is undergoing rehabilitation construction this summer which includes new sidewalks and guardrails, improved lighting, integrated public art, painting of retaining walls and structure beams, improved drainage and new sidewalks. The west pedestrian walkway is already under construction and due to be finished by mid-July, when construction on the east walkway will begin. Construction should finish in Fall 2015. For more details, visit the project page.

    8 Street S.W. Underpass
    This summer, the 8 Street S.W. Underpass between 8 Street S.W. and 10 Avenue S.W. will undergo construction. Work includes the addition of LED lighting, new sidewalks and guardrails, and the repair and maintenance of upper and lower retaining walls.

    Anderson Pedestrian Bridge
    The City is building a pedestrian overpass at Anderson Road near 37 Street S.W. to enhance pedestrian safety and pathway connectivity throughout and after the construction of the South West Ring Road project. The bridge and pathway detours will be in place before construction of the South West Ring Road begins. For more details, visit the project page.

    Crowchild/Flanders Avenue Interchange final design
    Crowchild/Flanders Avenue Interchange
    Construction of a new interchange will begin in late Summer 2015 for Crowchild Trail at Flanders Avenue S.W. This new infrastructure is aimed at improving traffic flow in this high volume area. A dual-lane roundabout at the east side of the new interchange, a ramp from southbound Crowchild Trail relocated south of the interchange, and a new pedestrian bridge and sidewalks are included in the scope of work. For more details, visit the project page.

    Stay tuned for updates on the other quadrants throughout this week.
    For a complete list of construction happening in Calgary this summer, be sure to visit Calgary.ca.

    Related Blog Posts
  • Meet Daisy, Barlow, Chestnut & Outlaw 3 July 2015 Yahoo! Today is the day our new street sweeper Critters have been waiting for — their very first Stampede Parade!

    Since 2001, the Roads Maintenance Critters have been cleaning up along the Calgary Stampede Parade route. Last year, after 13 years of service, Dixie, Samson, Rocky and Alfalfa hung up their cowboy hats and headed for greener pastures.

    Since their retirement, The City has been working to design and build four new Critters, including a horse, a cow, a bull and a buffalo, to replace the old crew.

    But they needed names, so we held a contest asking Calgarians to help us with that.
    Over 100 Calgarians suggested more than 80 names over two weeks during The City’s Stampede Critters naming contest.  Name suggestions came in through The City’s social media channels on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and the Calgary City News blog.

    Names suggestions were compiled and presented to City Roads staff who voted over four days and the results are in:

    Horse: Chestnut
    Buffalo: Barlow
    Bull: Outlaw
    Cow: Daisy

    All those who suggested the winning names were entered into a random draw for a chance to ride in their Critter’s sweeper in the Parade.

    Congratulations to Marie Smalls, Amber Cannon, Laura Jacobs (pictured) and Laura Betton.

    "I entered because the thought of winning and being in the parade was always dream of mine. Also, I thought it would be cool to name one of the sweepers. They always get the loudest cheers," says Marie.

    Follow us on Twitter this morning @yyctransport to see them in action.

    And happy 2015 Stampede to everyone!
  • The City's guide to Stampede parading 2 July 2015 It's that time of year again... rodeos, midway, shows, exhibitions and everything country. Those of us who know it, know it well.

    The Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth kicks off tomorrow with the Stampede Parade and The City will be there to help you get around, view the parade, clean up and stay safe.

    Getting around
    Biking & Walking
    Cycle your way down to the Stampede Parade using the city centre cycle track network or ride along part of Calgary's 800 kms of pathways and bikeways.

    Take extra caution when passing through intersections. Most Stampede time pedestrian collisions occur on Friday and happen at traffic signals, when vehicles are making right hand turns. It’s important to watch out for one another so we can all enjoy a safe Stampede.

    Calgary Transit
    Effective the evening before parade day, 'round the clock transit service and discounted day passes will be available for Stampede week.

    During the parade about 350,000 float-fanatics line the 4.5 km parade route, so many downtown transit routes will be on detour. Thousands make their way to the Stampede Grounds afterwards and can use bus, CTrain and walking options from the parade to the grounds.

    Transit impacts on parade day will include detours for some regular and express bus services.

    Driving
    There will be a number of road closures to accommodate events all over the city during the Calgary Stampede (July 3-12). Spectators travelling to the Stampede Parade are encouraged to walk, bike or use transit to get into the downtown core.

    Road and parking impacts on parade day will include several parking lot closures.

    Viewing the parade
    The City has reserved and will monitor eight accessible Stampede Parade viewing zones along the parade route for people with mobility challenges (canes, walkers, wheelchairs, scooters) and their friends/families.

    Space is limited, so get there early! Look for barricades and signs. If space remains in the viewing areas after 8 a.m., they will be opened up to the public on a first-come, first-served basis.

    The City in action
    Street sweeper critters have been a Stampede tradition for nearly 15 years, bringing joy to parade goers and youth at the Children's Hospital that are unable to travel to the Stampede parade --  the most rewarding event of the year, according to street sweeper operators.

    Representatives from Calgary Stampede, Public Safety Communications,
     Calgary Police Service, Calgary Fire Department, Alberta Health Services,
    Animal & Bylaw Services, and Inspections and Permits
    City staff collaborate across many departments to ensure the event flows smoothly and safely:
    • Parking and traffic control will be coordinated by the Calgary Parking Authority (CPA), Roads, Calgary Police Service (CPS) and Animal & Bylaw Services (ABS).
    • Calgary Emergency Management Agency will open the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) and activate the Municipal Emergency Plan during the Stampede Parade to monitor and assist as required. 
    • CPS have collocated their Tactical Operations Centre in the EOC. This will help to ensure the facilitation of a collaborative, coordinated and multi stakeholder response.
    • Fire, ABS and CPS officers will be onsite and in communication for the duration of the Parade for immediate response.

    Other Useful Info

  • Mayor’s Urban Design Awards now accepting submissions 30 June 2015

    From towering skyscrapers to impressive housing projects, the Mayor’s Urban Design Awards celebrate the most innovative buildings and public spaces in our city.


    The City of Calgary is on the hunt for those who contribute to the beauty, comfort and vitality of Calgary through their designs.

    “Great design is integral to building a great city,” says Mayor Naheed Nenshi. “People should be inspired and excited by the spaces and the places that they see and interact with every day.”

    The biennial awards recognize urban design projects in 12 categories such as community improvement, city edge development and civic design. This year, we have introduced two new categories: the People’s Choice Award and the Green City Award.

    “The Mayor’s Urban Design Awards give me a chance as mayor to really recognize the highest quality work that happens in our city,” says Mayor Nenshi.

    “The design bar keeps going higher in Calgary. We’re increasingly getting a national reputation for great design, and that’s something I want to see continue.”


    Do you know of a great urban design project? Nominate by September 18, 2015 at Calgary.ca/MUDA.  

  • Major transportation construction projects in the northeast 25 June 2015 Summer is finally here, officially kicking off with summer solstice on June 21, 2015! With Calgary's short summer season, The City maximizes efficiency by packing a lot of construction into a few summer months.

    Over the next few days, we'll be highlighting The City’s major transportation construction projects for Summer 2015. In Calgary's northeast communities you'll notice action taking place around Rundle C-Train station and McKnight Boulevard that will have benefits for pedestrians, cyclists and drivers alike.

    Rundle C-Train Station - pedestrian bridge, ramp & stair replacement
    Ramps will be closing mid-June for upgrading and re-opening in December 2015. A new bridge is part of the construction and will be lowered to meet the station. Stairs will be replaced and landscaping improved. During construction, the station and stairs will remain open. For more details, visit the project page.

    McKnight Boulevard widening & reconstruction (2015-2016)
    Kicking off in mid-July, widening and reconstruction increases McKnight Boulevard from four to six lanes between 12 Street N.E. and 19 Street N.E. These new lanes will increase route capacity by about 50 per cent and provide additional lanes from Deerfoot to Metis Trail. For more details, visit the project page.

    Stay tuned for updates on the other quadrants throughout this week.
    For a complete list of construction happening in Calgary this summer, be sure to visit Calgary.ca.


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  • Major transportation construction projects in the northwest 25 June 2015 Calgary's northwest quadrant has a couple of major transportation projects underway this summer to help improve traffic flow and provide smooth driving surface for all commuters.

    Bowfort Road & Trans Canada Highway Interchange
    Early summer 2015 will see the beginning of construction detours for the Trans Canada Highway and Bowfort Road as preparation for a new bridge begins. The new infrastructure will bring improved access to Canada Olympic Park, area businesses and local communities, as well as smoothing the flow of traffic along the Trans Canada Highway. For more details, visit the project page.

    Bowness Road to 40 Avenue N.W. at Shaganappi Trail N.W. paving & maintenance
    Preparations and paving will be under way for Bowness Road to 40 Avenue N.W. at Shaganappi Trail N.W., with major closures in both directions beginning on the August long weekend. This maintenance will require the road to be fully closed for three consecutive weekends. For more details, visit the project page.

    For a complete list of construction happening in Calgary this summer, be sure to visit Calgary.ca.

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  • Major transportation construction projects in the southeast 25 June 2015
    Southeast Calgary commuters will notice some major transportation enhancements underway this summer.

    Glenmore Trail / Ogden Road S.E. Interchange
    Construction of a new interchange at Glenmore Trail and Ogden Road southeast with a new bridge built over Ogden Road will get underway this summer. The interchange will improve traffic flow and travel times on Glenmore Trail. For more details, visit the project page.

    Green Line Southeast Transitway Early Works Construction
    Immediate improvements to increase reliability and shorten ride times for transit customers in southeast Calgary, primarily south of Douglas Glen will be part of the City’s first steps of Green Line construction. Queue jump lanes, median bus lanes and bus-only left turn lanes are a few of these early measures. For more details, visit the project page.

    61 Avenue S.E. Extension
    Traffic accommodation connections to the South East Ring Road are also on our construction agenda this year. A two-lane roadway from 68 Street S.E., a four-lane roadway from 68 Street S.E. to 57 Street S.E. and a four-lane bridge over Forest Lawn Creek which is between 57 Street S.E. and 68 Street S.E. are all in the scope of work. Roadworks, stormwater management and bridge construction will begin in Summer 2015 with anticipated completion in August 2016. For more details, visit the project page.

    Stay tuned for updates on the other quadrants throughout this week.
    For a complete list of construction happening in Calgary this summer, be sure to visit Calgary.ca.

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  • Construction zone safety: please slow down! 24 June 2015
    This summer, watch for some fresh, young faces out on the roads reminding Calgarians to slow down around work sites.  A partnership between Roads and Water Services has once again revised the popular “Please Slow Down - My Dad (or Mom) Works Here” campaign. The campaign features the children and grandchildren of Water Services and Roads employees and is aimed at reminding Calgarians that the people working out in the construction zones have families that they want to get home safely to at the end of the day.





    Put yourself in their shoes.


    Imagine sitting in your cubicle with cars whizzing by perilously close to your work space and so fast that you can feel the tailwind.  Well, that’s just what many of our employees in the field experience every day when they are out working on the roadway.


    “The only protection that we have are those signs and the cones, it’s all that separates our workers and the traffic,” says Marco Nicoletti, Roads Foreman. Marco’s son (pictured) and daughter are part of the 2015 “My Dad Works Here” Construction Zone Safety campaign, and he reminds motorists, “I’m always letting my guys know to keep their heads on a swivel. Sometimes cars can enter a zone which has been marked off limits, it's very dangerous.”



    With 1200 construction locations planned for Roads alone in 2015, commuters and construction are sure to meet. Many employees working on the street are only a few feet away from active traffic lanes, and in many cases, motorists are not taking care to slow down in these zones.


    Just how big an issue is speeding in construction zones?


    In 2014, Police monitored Construction Zone speeds at several sites both manned and with photo radar. Below are some statistics for enforcement stats attributed to speeding in a construction zone both, with or without workers present.


    2014

    Construction Zone

    Infractions

    Workers present

    8042

    No workers, speed reduction signs posted

    469

    Total Construction Zone Summonses

    8511


    We may think that speeding in Construction Zones is a non-issue, but these numbers paint a different picture. When you see construction it is imperative, for your safety and the safety of others that you slow down.


    Don’t forget: speeding fines are doubled in construction zones. The Government of Alberta also enacted increased speeding fines in construction zones, which now range from $156 to $949.

    So, when you are out and about on the roads, pay attention and slow down when driving through construction zones or near a City or emergency vehicle. Our fellow employees work there. 

    For more information, visit calgary.ca/constructionzonesafety

  • Canada Day celebrations - Things to know 24 June 2015 Next Wednesday, July 1, we’re throwing a huge celebration in honour of Canada’s 148th birthday and all of Calgary is invited to join us in the festivities.

    Canada Day is the city’s largest single-day festival drawing crowds of 250,000 during a full day of family-friendly fun that spans across the downtown core from Fort Calgary to Prince’s Island Park and many spots in between.

    With so much going on, we’ve put together a list of things you should know before heading down to celebrate.

    Getting around

    Walk, ride your bike or take transit to the downtown area. Plenty of bike racks have been added at various locations around downtown and you can download Calgary Transit’s new app, which makes it easy to plan trips, look up schedules and see real-time bus and train arrivals.

    Free all-day shuttle buses will run between various Canada Day event sites in the downtown core including Eau Claire, Olympic Plaza and Fort Calgary from 11 a.m. until midnight. A free fireworks shuttle will run between SAIT and McHugh Bluff Park from 6 p.m. until 12:30 a.m. Pay parking is available at SAIT, however Calgarians are encouraged to take the CTrain to meet the shuttle.

    Thanks to the Calgary Parking Authority (CPA), downtownCPA parkades (with the exception of the Arts Common parkade) and street parking will be free on Canada Day. Surface parking lots provided by CPA will offer a reduced Holiday Rate. But please remember there are a number of parking bans and road closures in effect to accommodate the many activities that are part of Canada Day.

    What to bring

    Bring your water bottle as we’ll have H2O Buggy water refill stations located at Prince's Island Park and the Riverfront Festivities. Also, don’t forget sunscreen, bug spray and a hat. Be sure to dress appropriately for the weather and if you’re staying for the fireworks, consider bringing a jacket for the evening.

    Waste, Recycling and composting


    Canada Day will offer waste and recycling stations including collection bins for beverage containers and compost stations for food scraps and napkins. You can also help keep our city beautiful by employing the ‘pack it in, pack it out’ method. This means any items brought to an event should be carried home with you for proper disposal.

    We want everyone to have a safe and fun time while celebrating our nation’s birthday and look forward to welcoming Calgarians to the festivities on July 1.

    For more important info on things to know for Canada Day, and for a list of all of the great activities on offer, visit Calgary.ca/CanadaDay

    Submitted by Lauren Greschner, Recreation

 

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