Calgary City News Blog

Calgary City News Blog

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  • Rocky Ridge recreation facility takes next step forward 20 October 2014
    Northwest residents have a new reason to celebrate – construction on the Rocky Ridge recreation facility is about start. 

    Community and council members at the ceremony on Oct. 15.
    On Wednesday, Oct. 15, The City and its project partners gathered with community members to commemorate the exciting milestone. Over the past few months, crews have been preparing the site for building construction. This included stripping and grading of the land and preparing for an enhanced wetland.  

    Now that the groundwork phase has wrapped up, local residents can expect to see the facility structure take shape soon.

    New rec centre operated by YMCA

    When complete, the approximately 285,000 square foot facility will include amenities such as two ice rinks, sport and leisure pools, a gymnasium and fitness centre, an art-making studio and gallery space, childcare and child-minding and a open-concept library. The City-built, City-owned facility will be operated by YMCA Calgary through a partnership model.

    Calgarians determine amenities at each facility

    The new Rocky Ridge facility is one of four new recreation facilities in development by The City of Calgary to meet our growing city’s need for convenient access to recreation opportunities. It supports the important role recreation plays in building complete communities. 

    Each facility is being designed to meet the specific needs of the community, with the vision and proposed amenities determined through extensive engagement with Calgarians, community leaders and numerous sport and cultural advisory groups.

    Learn more about the four facilities.

    Submitted by Karen Merrick, Community and Neighbourhood Services 

  • Four key facts regarding bicycling in Calgary 17 October 2014
    On October 16, the Manning Foundation released a report on cycling in Calgary. The City welcomes the report’s recommendations, many of which reaffirm actions The City is already undertaking. In response to some of the statements found in the Manning Foundation report, Don Mulligan, Director of Transportation Planning, offers four key facts to help set the record straight.

    Report:Only limited studies of the demographics of cyclists in Calgary have been conducted (page 7).

    Fact:The City has conducted a variety of surveys to learn about different types of cyclists in Calgary. In 2006, a survey explained about the type of cyclist who commutes downtown. In 2009, a co-sponsored survey with University of Calgary looked at the demographics of cycling in the University of Calgary/West Campus area. In 2010, The City commissioned Ipsos Reid to conduct a city-wide telephone survey to learn more about the demographics of Calgarians who cycle and those who do not. Other research methods on demographics include the Civic Census, the Household Activity Survey and the Annual Bike Count Report.  

    In addition to who and who doesn’t cycle in Calgary, the results of each survey informed The City that there is a strong support for more on-street bike lanes. Ultimately, these surveys assisted with the creation of the Cycling Strategy, which led to dedicated funds to improve conditions for bicycling outside and inside the downtown area for all demographics. Moving forward, The City will continue to reach out to citizens to help plan the right bicycle facilities in the right places, including the upcoming city-wide Bikeway and Pathway plan.

    Report: Future design decisions must not continue to be made based on the city’s “typical cyclist” as they have been up until now (page 7).

    Fact:The 2010 Ipsos Reid survey results identified that 80 per cent of respondents want to cycle more but do not, citing safety as a primary concern. The Council-approved Cycling Strategy provided the funding to plan, design and build more bike lanes and cycle tracks to attract a broader demographic than just the Calgarians who already cycle. Contrary to Manning Foundation’s report, The City’s 2011 Cycling Strategy includes specific actions that help make cycling a comfortable and safer travel option for more Calgarians, such as the recently opened cycle track on 7 Street S.W. and the future cycle track pilot project in downtown.

    Report:The City’s Transportation department only conducted its first official bicycle count as recently as the summer of 2013 (page 16).

    Fact:The City has been collecting data on bicycle counts for the past 20 years. The City uses a variety of data collection methods including manual counts, video cameras and in-pavement sensors. The City conducts field tests of new technologies before implementing them and expects to install several new automated counters next year, with data live on the web. Trends are captured in the Yearbook publication. Calgary is one of the first cities in North America to publish bicycle data in several different ways in one complete and comprehensive document.  The 2013 Bike Count Report is but one of the ways we collect and analyze data.

    Report:Even when specific projects are being proposed, data is not being collected before, during, and after these projects are introduced, to measure their success.

    Fact:The City collects and analyzes data before, during and after projects are introduced. Data is continually used to analyze impacts to traffic and gauge current and historic trends by the City’s Transportation Data Division. Analyzing various factors, here’s how data was used to help plan and design the new Bowness Road. For the 10 Street NW bike lane project, The City has released new data hereand here.

    For more information about The City’s effort to improve conditions for bicycling please visit You can find more information on The City’s bike data at
  • Tuscany Station exceeds ridership estimates 17 October 2014
    Calgary's newest CTrain station is exceeding expectations in terms of ridership only a few months after opening.

    Tuscany Station officially opened for service on Aug. 25, 2014. A passenger count in mid-September showed the new station is serving around 11,000 weekday customers, which exceeds the original estimate of 9,000 weekday customers.

    A high percentage of customers are also getting to the station by taking the bus, walking, cycling or being dropped off. The roughly 40,000 residents in the communities of Tuscany, Royal Oak and Rocky Ridge have, at most, a 30-minute walk or 15-minute cycle time to the station. Below is a breakdown of the various modes of transportation customers are using to get to Tuscany Station:

    • 36% bus
    • 36% auto (26% drop off, 10 % Park and Ride)
    • 25% walk
    • 3% cycle

    The recent survey also found that, among the 620 respondents, around 10% of customers using Tuscany Station are new transit users who previously made their trip using a car.

    The customer survey also found 88% of customers reported that Tuscany Station has improved their transit travel experience, and 81% of respondents rated the bus service to the station as good or excellent.

    To find out more about Tuscany Station, visit
  • Curbside tree debris pick up in Calgary communities wraps up 17 October 2014 After September’s snowstorm, The City of Calgary visited all 227 Calgary communities to help remove tree debris. This work has now been completed three weeks ahead of schedule, in part due to good weather.

    “We are extremely proud to have completed this work in just four weeks,” says Nico Bernard, manager of The City’s Tactical Operations Centre. “We can now focus our attention on removing tree debris from parks and some major roads, as well as continuing to cut down branches that pose a public safety threat.”

    The work entailed a systematic pass through all residential areas to pick up tree debris piled by citizens at the edge of their properties, as well as debris found along roadsides, alleys, and high-traffic pathways. More than 19 million kilograms (or 19,000 tonnes) of debris from 25,000 loads have been taken to City landfills for mulching.

    If you still have tree debris, please take advantage of the following disposal options:
    • City landfills: Fees are waived for all tree debris not mixed with garbage until Nov. 9.
    • Leaf & Pumpkin drop-offs: 32 temporary collection sites open until Nov. 9 for tree debris, leaves and pumpkins.
    • Small branches (no thicker than three inches) cut into three-foot lengths can be tied together and left inside black carts, or set next to carts for pick up if bins are full.
    • Citizens are asked not to create dump sites in parks or other areas of Calgary. Illegal dumping is subject to a $250 fine.
    While the systematic neighbourhood pick-up is over, there is still significant work to do to recover from the early snow and restore the urban forest.

    “There are over 500,000 public trees in Calgary, and preliminary assessments indicate that about 50% have been damaged,” says Bernard. “Some trees will require corrective pruning, which Parks will begin right away and continue until the end of next year. Others will need to be replanted, which we will start in the spring and may take up to two years to complete.”

    Pruning work is prioritized according to the impact on the tree. Public safety hazards are dealt with first and are removed immediately to prevent injury or damage to property.

    Citizens are asked not to remove ribbons placed on trees, as they indicate a tree has received a preliminary assessment and requires pruning to build resiliency into the tree. Trees that likely won’t survive, but are not yet hazards, will have signs posted to indicate removal at a later date.

    More information can be found on
  • Downtown residential buildings and businesses return to normal operations 16 October 2014 Downtown residential buildings and businesses are returning to normal operations today, as ENMAX successfully restored power to the downtown core at 5 a.m. this morning.

    The area has been dealing with power outages since Oct. 11, when an underground fire located at 8 Street and 5 Avenue SW resulted in power loss to about 1,900 metered customers in 112 residential and commercial buildings.

    “What started as a fire in a manhole became a major utility upgrade, major road closures and an effort to ensure the public safety and housing for approximately 5,000 residents,” said Ken Uzeloc, CEMA Director. 

    “The past five days, my colleagues at The City of Calgary and our partner agencies have worked night and day to ensure that Calgarians could get around our city and have access to support services they needed until their power was restored.”

    Information for returning residents and businesses

    • Re-entry checklists for returning residents, building owners/managers and commercial businesses are available on
    • For information on troubleshooting your telephone, cable TV or Internet service contact Shaw.
    • Citizens who require any additional social assistance support should contact 2-1-1.
    • Spoiled food items that are securely bagged to prevent leaks can be discarded in your facility’s usual garbage collection bin. If that bin is full, contact your property manager for bin removal or emptying. City of Calgary collection schedules are not affected, and regular pickup will occur according to your normal schedule. Should you have questions regarding private garbage collection service, please contact your property manager.
    • Citizens or business owners/operators with concerns about their building should contact their building operator.
    • Now that power has been restored, the Information Centre at Mewata Armoury will be closed at 9 p.m. this evening.

    The City would also like to thank citizens and businesses who offered lodging, food, supplies to those residents displaced in the outage.

    As a reminder, power outages can happen at any time. The City encourages residents to develop their own 72 hour emergency kit for such instances. A list of what should be included in a 72 Hour Emergency Kit is available at
  • City Hall School celebrates 15th anniversary 16 October 2014 Today, The City of Calgary City Hall School celebrated 15 years of teaching young Calgarians how they, as young citizens, can be directly involved in strengthening their communities and shaping their city.

    The City Hall School program allows teachers to move their classrooms to the Municipal Building for a week-long, custom designed learning experience. This unique experience gives students the opportunity to meet with elected officials and work alongside City of Calgary employees.

    “Students get an inside look at how The City works and how they can be involved in local government,” said Jody Danchuk, City Hall School Coordinator. “We are so proud to know that we’ve invested 15 years into giving young Calgarians a better understanding of the importance of civic engagement and being involved in their communities.”

    To celebrate this milestone, Mayor Naheed Nenshi joined the staff, partners and friends of the program in a special cake cutting ceremony.

    “I have the privilege of meeting, each week, with the students at City Hall School,” said Mayor Nenshi. “I’m always struck by the pride students feel for their community and how they are able to articulate their hopes for the future.”

    Over the past 15 years, just over 10,000 students, from grades three to 12, have participated in the program.

    “City Hall School helped me understand the role of government,” said Morgan McClaren, who attended the school nine years ago. “It made me understand the importance of voting. Being engaged in government is a right we should exercise.”

    City Hall School is a partnership between The City of Calgary’s Community & Neighbourhood Services and Campus Calgary/Open Minds. For more information please visit
  • Greenline Southeast Transitway time saving initiative 16 October 2014
    Construction has begun on the first of many transit time saving initiatives as part of the Greenline Southeast Transitway project.

    This first initiative is an intersection improvement at Barlow Trail and 114 Avenue S.E. It will see the addition of a second left turn lane from northbound Barlow Trail to westbound 114 Avenue, and the lengthening of the existing eastbound right turn lane on 114 Avenue S.E. to allow for additional vehicle storage.

    These changes will improve traffic flow through the intersection and thereby help to reduce bus travel time for the BRT Route 302 in the southeast, as well as for other buses and motorists.

    The City’s analysis shows these changes could reduce overall delays at the intersection by up to 16 percent during the morning peak period.

    Cllr. Shane Keating announcing start of construction
     on Greenline Southeast Transitway Initiative.
    “I’m very excited about seeing construction underway on the first of these initiatives related to the Greenline Southeast Transitway,” said Councillor Shane Keating. “The impact of these efforts should become apparent to anyone riding the BRT Route 302 express bus between Seton and downtown by saving travel time.”

    The anticipated completion of this intersection improvement is the end of October.

    A number of locations have been identified where improvements could be made to reduce or mitigate current travel time delays for the BRT Route 302 and other buses along that route.

    Additional initiatives are being planned for construction in 2015, including:

    • widening 52 Street S.E. between 130 Avenue and Stoney Trail from four to six lanes to implement transit-only lanes
    • relocating bus routes off Deerfoot Trail to access 114 Avenue S.E. using 40 Street S.E., plus adding a half-kilometre of new roadway
    • widening 130 Avenue S.E. between 48 Street and 52 Street from four to six lanes to implement transit-only lanes
    • constructing transit queue jumps and reprioritize signals and install signals at various locations.
    For more information visit
  • Power restored to downtown Calgary 16 October 2014

    ENMAX successfully restored power to the west-end of the downtown core at 5 a.m. on Thursday, October 16. While the power is back on, ENMAX crews still have some work to do to rebuild the system and there will continue to be some lane closures in the area of 8 Street and 5 Avenue SW.

    Entry to buildings will be delayed while heating, ventilation, water and other electrical systems come back on-line and are checked. To find out the status of your specific building, please contact your property manager.

    Impacted Residents
    Information about returning home is available at the Mewata Armoury, 801 11 Street SW (open from 9 a.m. – 9 p.m. today), and on Volunteers with The Canadian Red Cross will be in the area to provide assistance as Calgarians return to their homes.

    Citizens who require any additional social assistance support should contact 2-1-1.

    Safety check
    Once you have been given the okay to return to your residence from your property manager, please perform an immediate safety sweep. If you have natural gas appliances, heat, or fireplaces and you smell gas, leave immediately and call 9-1-1.

    Check the stove and oven in particular to be sure they are off. Look for other things that may be plugged in such as irons. Carefully plug in any devices that you have unplugged, recognizing that some systems may take some time to come up and some devices may need reprogramming.

    For information on troubleshooting your telephone, cable TV or Internet service contact Shaw.

    Re-entry checklists for Residents, Building Owners and Managers and Commercial Businesses are available on

    Tap water may be brownish in colour or contain some sediment. If this is the case, run the tap until it runs cool and clear. If the issue persists, contact your building operator.

    Spoiled food
    When in doubt, throw it out. If you did not clean out your fridge and freezer prior to evacuating, you should do so as a priority. Large waste bins are available at Mewata Armoury for food disposal. Spoiled food items that are securely bagged can be discarded in your regularly provided facility bin. If that bin is full or no longer accessible, residents may place their securely bagged spoiled food items on the street curb. The City of Calgary’s Waste and Recycling Services will provide special curb-side pick up service from 10 a.m. – 7 p.m. today only.

    Thank you
    To the citizens of Calgary and those directly impacted by this outage, The City of Calgary and our partner organizations are grateful for your patience and understanding. The volunteers of Calgary continue to impress and inspire. Thank you for rallying behind your community and supporting each other.
  • Update and information: underground fire in the downtown core 16 October 2014 Here is some information about the October 2014 Power Outage.

    News Release
    Enmax announced they are working to restore power to buildings between 5 Street SW and 11 Street SW and 4 Avenue SW and 7 Avenue SW by 5 a.m. October 16, 2014. One hundred and twelve residential and commercial buildings have been without power since Saturday October 11th, when an underground fire damaged electrical and fibre optic cables.

    Visit for the complete news release.

    Additional information:
    What to include in a 72 hour emergency kit
    It might be tough to imagine what you'll need most in an emergency. In this video Tom Sampson of the Calgary Emergency Management Agency shares several ideas as he unpacks his own 72 hour emergency kit.

    Is your business prepared?
    The City of Calgary’s Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA), in partnership with the Calgary Chamber of Commerce and Calgary Economic Development, released a Business Continuity Handbook to explain the importance of emergency preparedness for the business community. 

  • A new era kicks off for the Calgary Soccer Centre 15 October 2014 The annex and new outdoor artificial turf fields at the Calgary Soccer Centre will officially open on Saturday, October 18.

    “The new fields respond to a tremendous need for multisport playing fields in Calgary,” says Greg Steinraths, manager of sport and partnership development for The City of Calgary Recreation. “Through sport, Calgarians develop new skills, are physically and mentally active and have a greater sense of involvement in the community.”

    You are invited see the new fields in action from 1 to 3 p.m. at 7000 48 Street SE.
    Mayor Naheed Nenshi will attend and Wayne Cao Member of the Legislative Assembly for Calgary-Fort will bring greetings from the Province of Alberta.

    Participate, explore and eat soccer ball cupcakes

    To showcase the seven new sport fields and amenities, several Calgary-based soccer associations will run exhibition games. You are invited to participate in multisport demonstrations, enjoy a soccer ball cupcake and a cup of hot chocolate, and explore the new amenities on a guided site tour.

    More than one million people visit the centre throughout the year. The popularity of soccer and other field sports such as lacrosse, rugby, football, baseball, senior’s indoor slow pitch, indoor lawn bowling and ultimate Frisbee, means this number will likely continue to grow.

    Partners helped create opportunity for Calgarians

    “It’s about creating more opportunities for Calgarians to participate in and enjoy organized sport,” says Steinraths. “We’re excited to invite everyone who was involved or who has an interest, to come out and have some fun.”

    The City would like to thank the Government of Canada for contributing to the artificial turf fields capital project through the Recreational Infrastructure Canada (RInC) Fund and the Province of Alberta for its contribution to the annex through the Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI).

  • City is prepared to accommodate displaced Calgarians 15 October 2014 The City of Calgary is prepared to respond to any emergency situation and the Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA) assists in coordinating our response to large incidents where many internal and external service providers are engaged.

    While our top priority during any response is public safety, we're also focused on ensuring that citizens who have been displaced from their homes during an event have safe, alternative accommodations.

    Following the utility fire which affected parts of the downtown core, The Calgary Hotel Association, working with hoteliers, helped CEMA coordinate alternative accommodation for those with no other option. To date, approximately 250 rooms have been made available to those who were displaced.

    As this temporary lodging is limited and affected by a variety of factors, CEMA, along with various partner agencies including The Canadian Red Cross and The Calgary Stampede, have established a group lodging facility at the Big 4 Building at Stampede Park.

    Impacted residents who require more information regarding the support services available are asked to visit an Information Centre at Mewata Armoury (801 11 St. S.W.). This centre is open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

    ENMAX crews continue to work around the clock and remain on schedule, with a full restoration of power to the affected area expected on Thursday.

    Please visit for the latest information on the downtown power outages.
  • Many Calgarians work hard this Thanksgiving to keep the city operational and safe 13 October 2014 An underground fire in the downtown core resulted in a power outage for approximately 5,000 Calgarians on Thanksgiving weekend.

    While City crews work to restore power, Calgarians have come together, once again, offering couches to sleep on, washer and dryers to clean clothes, and washrooms to get clean and freshen up.

    Below are just a few examples of ways that the community has come together. Follow the hashtag #yycthanks on Twitter to see more stories of what Calgarians are thankful for this Thanksgiving.

  • Ongoing power outages in the downtown core 13 October 2014 UPDATE: 2:00 A.M. - Oct. 13, 2014

    The City of Calgary continues to work with ENMAX to assist citizens impacted by the underground utility fire that caused a power outage in the downtown core.

    Due to the power outage, there may be loss of pressure to high floor units which may result in low pressure, or no water supply.

    Please note, that even if your water pressure is low, your water is safe to be used.

    For residents or businesses that are in need of water, “water wagons” have been deployed to the following locations:

    ·         1121 6 Avenue SW
    ·         1088 6 Avenue SW
    ·         912 6 Avenue SW
    ·         731 6 Avenue SW
    ·         618 5 Avenue SW

    Map of "water wagon" locations in downtown Calgary.

    These water wagons will be monitored and refilled as required for the duration of the power outage.

    UPDATE: 8:00 P.M. - Oct. 12, 2014

    Map of impacted area including road closures and Information Centre location.
    The City of Calgary continues to work with ENMAX and other partner agencies to assist citizens impacted by an underground utility fire that caused a power outage in the downtown core. Please visit for additional updates regarding this incident and support services available to impacted Calgarians.


    • There are currently power outages between 5 Street SW and 11 Street SW and 4 Avenue SW and 7 Avenue SW. As a result, approximately 1,900 metered customers in 112 residential and commercial buildings are without power. The system will be shut down until power can be safely restored. If you currently have power, you are not at risk of losing service.
    • At this time, ENMAX has indicated that power will likely be restored sometime between Wednesday evening and Saturday.
    Info for residents impacted by power outages

    • If you are without power and are planning on leaving your residence please do so during daylight hours.
    • Please be sure to unplug all appliances to avoid a power surge when power is restored.
    • If you are leaving your home clean out your fridge and freezer before leaving.
    • Please remember the power outage has impacted ventilation systems. Do not run your car in underground parkades.
    • Do not under any circumstances use alternative heating or cooking devices. This includes candles, propane lights, camping lights and stoves or barbeques. For alternative lighting, use battery-powered lights or flashlights.
    • Never use a portable generator indoors.
    • Shaw has provided an open Wi-Fi network throughout Calgary for those who are using devices to stay connected. Look for the "Shaw Guest" network on your Wi-Fi enabled device. No password is required.
    • Impacted residents can also head to any Telus retail store to charge their devices.

    Road Closures:

    Most of the impacted area has been reopened to  traffic the only remaining road closures include:

    • 5 Avenue S.W. between 7 Street S.W. and 9 Street S.W. 
    • 8 Street S.W. between 4 Avenue S.W. and 6 Avenue S.W.

    • Calgary Transit service is now running normally. Check for the most up-to-date route information.

    • Water quality remains high and Calgarians in the affected area can continue to use water if it is available.
    • Due to the power outage, there may be loss of pressure to high floor units which may result in no water supply.  
    • Residents may see in buildings that have lost pressure or are experiencing low pressure include no water from taps and toilets will not flush.  This is a normal occurrence when pressure is lost or low, and residents are asked to be patient as crews work to restore power and water pressure to the building. Residents are asked to advise their building manager should this occur.  The City is working with Building Owners and Managers Association to monitor and communicate with affected residents. Please note, even if your water pressure is low, your water is safe to be used.
    • The City is preparing to provide emergency potable water wagons for affected residents and businesses as required.


    • Waste bins will be available at Mewata Armoury for food disposal. If you are without power and looking to get rid of items in your fridge, you can dispose of them at the Information Centre.

    Where to stay & Information Centre:

    • An Information Centre is set up at Mewata Armoury at 801 11 St. SW for residents to go and get information regarding the incident and support services. The Centre will be open for 24 hours.
    • Please bring identification and a piece of mail or some document to show your home address is in the impacted area. Bring the name of your insurance provider and policy information if available, as well as the name of your building manager or organization if possible.
    • Impacted residents will be able to convene, get information and charge electronic devices. There will be food trucks, hand washing stations, and an assessment can be done on any accommodation challenges. 
    • The centre will also have Animal Services available to take your pets to The City’s Animal Shelter for temporary accommodation. Domestic animals such as cats, dogs, rabbits and birds in cages can all be accommodated. For exotic pets (must be in cages) such as snakes, spiders, etc., arrangements can be made by calling Calgary North Veterinary Hospital at 403-277-0135.
    • If your power is out and you have friends or family that you can stay with, please reach out to secure accommodations for yourself while power is being restored. You can also contact your insurance company to see if accommodations are covered under your individual policy.
    • Please note NO food donations are required at this time.

  • Staying safe during ongoing power outages in the downtown core 13 October 2014 The Enmax power outage involving areas of downtown is expected to continue for a number of days.

    Safety of citizens remains the number one concern. Residents without power, telephone or water should consider the following:

    • If you do not have access to a phone in the event of an emergency, you should consider evacuating.
    • If you are planning to evacuate, it is safest to do so during daylight hours. But if you feel unsafe, do not wait.
    • If you feel unsafe in any way as a result of the power outage, you should consider evacuation. Look to family and friends for assistance and accommodation or contact your or building manager for alternate arrangements. If you need additional assistance, our Information centre at Mewata Armouries (801 11 St. S.W.) is open 24 hours.
    • Please check on the welfare of your neighbours.
    • Do not under any circumstances use alternative heating or cooking devices. This includes candles, propane lights, camping lights and stoves or barbeques. For alternative lighting, use battery-powered lights or flashlights.
    • Never use a portable generator indoors.
    • Do not allow vehicles to idle in underground parkades, as ventilation systems will likely be inoperable, putting you at risk.
  • Underground fire in downtown core 12 October 2014
    Saturday evening there was an underground fire in the downtown core which resulted in a power outage. The Emergency Operation Centre has been opened and The Calgary Emergency Management Agency is working with ENMAX and partners to assess the impact to affected residents and businesses.

    Power currently remains out for 1,900 ENMAX customers and 12 intersections. Affected ENMAX customers are expected to experience outages for approximately four to seven days.

    Damage to fiberoptic cables running through the affected area could lead to internet, phone and cable disruptions. If your landline is out of service and you require emergency assistance, use a mobile phone, or visit a nearby business or trusted neighbour.

    Information for citizens affected by power outages
    If you or someone you know is experiencing a power outage, please consider some of the following:

    • For emergency or life threatening situations - call 911
    • For non urgent health advice call Health Link Alberta at 1 866 408 5465.
    • Turn off or disconnect any appliances or electronic equipment you were using at the time of the outage - especially your stove or other cooking appliances.
    • Keep one light switched on so you know when the power comes back on.
    • Think safety! Do not use any gas or charcoal BBQs or devices as they can cause an increase of Carbon Monoxide gas which can result in serious and life threatening illness.
    • The indoor use of candles should be avoided. Battery operated lights provide a better and safer light source.
    • Generators should not be used indoors. Converse heat by keeping windows and doors closed, and paying special attention to young children, the elderly, and those with chronic medical conditions.
    • Use of a battery-powered or hand-crank radio can keep you informed of important updates.
    • Keep your freezer and refrigerator doors closed to keep food cold for many hours. Most food will keep in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours. Dairy products should be discarded after six hours. Items in the freezer will last 12 to 48 hours, depending on how full the freezer is and what kinds of food are stored inside.
  • Tree debris hits 17 million kilograms and counting 10 October 2014
    The City of Calgary and residents have worked together to remove 23,219 loads of tree debris, weighing more than 17 million kilograms (17,000 tonnes) over the past three weeks. That would cover a football field about 20 metres deep.

    As the volume continues to grow, so too does The City’s resolve to keep all tree debris out of the landfills. Large grinders are currently running full steam to mulch all the incoming debris. 

    The mulch will take several months to dry thoroughly and then must be screened before it is ready for use next spring. If the debris weren’t mulched, the tree branches would take up valuable space in the landfills and produce unwanted greenhouse gases and leachate.

    “We’re turning the destruction of this storm into something positive,” says Dave Griffiths, director of Waste & Recycling Services. “Our plan is to return the mulch next spring or summer to City parks and trails in communities where trees were damaged. Some of it may also be used in The City’s future green cart composting facility.”

    80 per cent of communities cleared

    Crews and equipment from Waste & Recycling Services, Parks, Roads, Water Services and Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development continue to work seven days a week to clear communities of tree debris. They have completed debris pick-ups from the streets and back lanes of 182 Calgary communities to date. That’s 80 per cent of Calgary’s 227 communities.

    Nico Bernard, manager of The City’s Tactical Operation Centre coordinating the cleanup says, “I am positive that we will be able to do one pass of all communities before the snow flies. This will allow our aerial and ground crews to more effectively address remaining tree hazards and speed up this effort.

    No fees for tree debris until Nov. 9

    If your community has yet to be cleared, check the map on to get an idea of when crews will be in your area. The map is updated daily. 

    If you miss the cleanup crews, City landfillswill continue to waive fees for debris until Nov. 9. As well, most leaf and pumpkin drop-off locations will continue to accept this type of waste until that date.

    Read more about the tree cleanup in Calgary.

    Submitted by Donna Bertrand, Tactical Operations Centre

  • Calgary and Edmonton sign City Charter Framework Agreement with the Government of Alberta 8 October 2014 The City of Calgary and City of Edmonton signed a Framework Agreement with the Government of Alberta yesterday, reinforcing their commitment to a new relationship that will be realized in City Charters specific to each of Alberta’s two largest cities.

    With a Memorandum of Understanding already signed by the three parties in June 2012, the Framework Agreement signed yesterday is another constructive step toward creating specific legislation for Calgary and Edmonton that addresses the unique scale and scope of issues faced by the large cities.

    The Framework Agreement confirms the intention and process needed to provide the cities with greater flexibility in some of their local decision-making, and enable them to improve their ability to respond to, and take action on, the local needs and expectations of citizens.

    “This is a very positive first step in creating a new relationship between the province and our big cities, but we still have a lot of work to do. I’m looking forward to working with Mayor Iveson and the provincial government on this file,” says Mayor Naheed Nenshi.

    The Framework Agreement outlines an aggressive timeline for the work to unfold from this point forward, with the first phase in place by the spring of 2015.
  • Calgary Fire Department recognizes transit officers and others for heroism 7 October 2014 The Calgary Fire Department recognized the heroic actions of two Calgary transit officers and those of 14 other citizens and firefighters at the Calgary Fire Department Recognition Luncheon today.
    L – R: Fire Chief Ken Uzeloc, Ian (Bob) Hope, D’Arcy Hare

    “Bob and I didn't even speak to each other about what we were going to do, we just leapt into action,” said D’Arcy Hare, a transit peace officer who spotted a woman in trouble in the Bow River near the Langevin Bridge with his colleague Ian (Bob) Hope this winter.

    They called dispatch, requesting emergency services to their location before parking and making their way down the riverbank.

    It was about -5 C that day, but with the wind chill felt much colder. The two men were both worried that if the woman went under the water, she would not survive.

    Through snow to pull woman from the river

    They scrambled down the riverbank towards the ice-covered water, and carefully made their way to the woman who was at the edge of the river and ice ledge.

    “We each took a hold of her wrists and dragged her out of the water,” said Hare.

    By the time the men reached the shore with the woman, emergency services were there. They recalled the woman was conscious, but as is common with hypothermia, she was not able to speak coherently. Thanks to their efforts and those of emergency services, the woman was treated for hypothermia and later released.

    Rescued woman and went back to work

    “We thanked all of the emergency responders, brushed off the ice and snow and went back to work - well to be honest we went for a coffee for me and tea for Bob, to warm up. We then went back to work for the rest of our shift.”

    To recognize their bravery, the two men were presented with the Medal of Bravery, the highest honour of the Fire Department Recognition Luncheon. The honour is bestowed on individuals who proactively intervene in a life saving situation, or risk personal injury to save another individual at a Fire Department-attended incident.

    You can nominate someone for the award too

    Members of the public can nominate worthy firefighters or citizens for recognition by contacting 311. Nominations are reviewed by the Calgary Fire Department.

    “I am humbled to be recognized. I don't feel like I did something extraordinary,” explained Hope. “I would hope that anyone would do the same to save another person's life.”

    For more information on the Calgary Fire Department visit

    Submitted by Bridget Cox, Calgary Fire Department
  • Calgary Fire Department announces 2014 Junior Fire Chief 6 October 2014 Today, Calgary Fire Chief Ken Uzeloc announced grade five student Sophia Ayad as the Calgary Fire Department 2014 Junior Fire Chief at her school, Ecole De La Source. The Junior Fire Chief is part of a week-long promotion of Fire Prevention Week happening from October 5 to 11, 2014. As part of her duties, Sophia helped pull the fire alarm to assist firefighters in conducting a fire drill in her school to help all the students learn about what to do in case of fire.

    “Sophia was a great Junior Fire Chief, helping us with our school fire drill,” said Fire Chief Ken Uzeloc. He visited Sophia’s classroom to speak with her classmates and present her with a kid-size firefighter jacket and honourary helmet.

    Every year the Calgary Fire Department selects a local grade five student to act as Junior Fire Chief for one day during Fire Prevention Week. In addition to Sophia helping with the fire drill, she and her family were able to ride in a fire truck through their community and have lunch at their local fire station with the crew and Fire Chief Uzeloc before going back to school for the afternoon.

    The Fire Department is holding several events to promote the 2014 Fire Prevention Week and this year’s theme, “Working smoke alarms save lives. Test yours every month.” To learn more about installing, maintaining and testing smoke alarms, the Calgary Fire Department has a short online video demonstrating smoke alarm basics for Calgarians. The Fire Department would like to encourage all Calgarians to take the time this week to ensure their homes have working smoke alarms.

    More information about the Calgary Fire Department 2014 Fire Prevention Week, sponsored by Safeway, can be found at and on Facebook at
  • Find planning confusing? We can help! 1 October 2014 Have you ever wondered who decides what gets built where in Calgary? The answer is more complicated than you might think.

    Good land use planning is key to ensure our city is a great place to live, work and play. However, many different polices and decision-making bodies regulate development to achieve this goal, which can make it tough to know how and when you can effectively participate in the planning process.

    If you are passionate about land use planning but are still learning how it all works, you might be interested in some of the upcoming Partners in Planning courses. Three core courses cover the basics of the development approval process, and three elective courses cover topics like transportation planning and community character.

    The courses are free to attend, thanks to a partnership between the Federation of Calgary Communities and The City. Attend as few or as many as you like, but if you complete all three core courses and at least one elective, you will receive our Partners in Planning Certificate.

    If you would like to join us, all you need to do is register online so we know you’re coming.

    Partners in Planning Courses

    Basics of Implementation Planning
    Learn about the planning process and how to respond to development and land use applications circulated to your community.

    The Land Use Bylaw
    Learn how to navigate and understand Calgary’s Land Use Bylaw and how the rules are applied to development applications. This is an excellent overview of this important document.

    Development Appeals at the SDAB
    Learn about the appeals process, what makes a well-reasoned planning case and how to give effective presentations to the Subdivision and Development Appeal Board.

    Moving people and goods between places is just as important as having great places to go. Learn how The City prioritizes transportation projects, encourages transit use and cycling, and how traffic impacts are considered.

    Planning for Growth and Change
    Planning a city requires long-term thinking. Learn about The City’s 60-year land use and transportation plans and how their vision can direct growth and change. Find out how to influence the evolution of your community.

    Community Character
    Learn what creates “community character” and how architecture, building scale, landscape and their relationship with public spaces, through good design and planning decisions, can be used to strengthen and enhance community character. This course draws from the fields of urban design and heritage planning. There is a walking tour portion, so dress as appropriate.

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