Calgary City News Blog

Calgary City News Blog

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  • Ammonia Use and Safety in Calgary 15 November 2017 On October 19, 2017 three people were killed following an ammonia leak at an ice arena in Fernie, British Columbia. This tragedy gave rise to some questions from the public and news stories emerged in Calgary on November 6, 2017 that sought to investigate the relative safety of Calgarians, especially those living next to large facilities that utilize ammonia as central to ice rink operations.

    The City of Calgary operates facilities with refrigeration equipment with safety as the top priority. The City operates 12 arenas using ammonia. All City of Calgary arena staff are trained in best practices in working with refrigeration systems, preventative maintenance and emergency procedures. In the unlikely event of an ammonia leak, City of Calgary facilities are equipped with a multi-alarm system which is triggered when ammonia levels rise above normal.

    In terms of overall safety, the Calgary Fire Department is actively involved with ammonia safety planning, prevention and has a dedicated Hazardous Materials Response Team of trained firefighters that can respond at any time to mitigate the situation.

    According to Calgary Fire Department incident data, the overall incident trend on ammonia within Calgary has been a decreasing one with 12 of 20 incidents occurring 2012-2013, with two per year 2014-2016 and one incident in 2017 to date. Most were refrigeration issues at commercial or industrial facilities. There have been 3 incidents in the past 5 years in Calgary relating to ice rinks specifically, none involving casualties.

    Apart from its own facilities, The City of Calgary does not manage, regulate or inventory ammonia at the sites where it is used: ammonia is not a municipal responsibility but is provincially and federally regulated. Notwithstanding, The City undertakes significant efforts on multiple fronts to ensure public safety, evidenced in part by the decreasing trend in ammonia incidents within Calgary.

    The use and operation of ammonia is provincially and federally regulated and enforced. The City of Calgary operates facilities with refrigeration equipment with safety as the top priority. This includes working with all ammonia owners and operators by assisting with emergency response, prevention and planning on an ongoing basis. 

    What are these safety measures?

    Safety is our number one priority at all City of Calgary facilities. As part of our safety procedures, our staff monitor and conduct daily ammonia level checks as part of their duties. In addition, our staff also conduct regular safety drills. The City of Calgary also has emergency response plans in place for a variety of scenarios, including an ammonia leak.

    Apart from its own facilities, The City of Calgary is not mandated to regulate or inventory ammonia at private sites. However, through working with the province and other regulatory and safety partners, the Calgary Fire Department helps ensure public safety on ammonia in three specific areas:

    • fire safety plans with building owners, including site visits and on-site training in collaboration with operators. 
    • inspections to comply with Alberta Fire Code. 
    • hazardous materials emergency response, as needed. 

    What happens if there is a leak?

    All City of Calgary arena staff are trained in best practices in working with refrigeration systems, preventative maintenance and emergency procedures. As part of our safety procedures, City facilities staff conduct daily ammonia level checks as part of their duties. In addition, staff also conduct regular safety drills. In the unlikely event of an ammonia leak, The City of Calgary facilities are equipped with a multi-alarm system which is triggered when ammonia levels rise above normal.

    Have there been any leaks at these City-owned facilities in the past?

    Yes, there have been three minor incidents in the past five years in Calgary relating to ice rinks specifically, none involved casualties. One of these three incidents occurred in July 2015 when an alarm indicated an elevated level of ammonia in the compressor room at Rose Kohn Arena. This was caused by a small release of gas. The City staff member followed safety procedures by shutting down the compressors. The emergency ventilation system was then turned on. As a safety precaution, our City staff member evacuated the few people in the arena. There were no injuries to citizens as a result of this incident.

    What about ammonia at other facilities in Calgary?

    It is expected that all building owners and operators follow safe handling and storage procedures, as per provincial and federal guidelines and regulations. Calgary Fire actively works with ammonia operators as part of its Fire Safety Plan program to assist with operator emergency response plans, which will often involve a site visit involving crews operating at the nearest local fire station as well as Calgary Fire’s Hazardous Materials Response Team. This promotes familiarization and helps the facility operators to understand why the information is important, and they can meet and work with their first responders. These plans also include other chemical storage or use information.

    Why doesn’t The City track or enforce ammonia as a hazardous substance?

    As a municipal body, The City of Calgary is not empowered to govern hazardous materials. The operation of ammonia refrigeration plants is regulated provincially by Municipal Affairs under the code “Pressure Equipment Safety Regulations” and more generally by Alberta Environment for larger installations. Design and operation of refrigeration plants is also regulated by Canadian Standards Association (CSA) standard. And above a specific quantity threshold, Environment Canada E2 Regulations prescribe detailed response plans. In effect, there are several layers of provincial and federal regulations for the operation of ammonia refrigeration plants. As a municipal organization, the Calgary Fire Department is not a regulator of controlled chemicals and products, so while we have awareness of where product is, we do not keep an inventory count of ammonia at industrial and facility sites in Calgary.

    Is there an ammonia safety problem in Calgary?

    Although the Calgary Fire Department cannot regulate the use or track inventory of ammonia in private facilities, calls responding to ammonia leaks are tracked. The overall incident trend on ammonia within Calgary has decreased with 12 of 20 reported leaks happening in 2012 and 2013, with two per year 2014-2016 and one incident in 2017 to date. Most were refrigeration issues at commercial or industrial facilities. None of these leaks involved casualties.

    If I have questions related to a privately-owned ammonia operator, where can I find more information?

    Any questions about those facilities must be directed to the respective facility. However, in accordance with the Emergency Management Act, The City of Calgary does not support reporting specifics on hazardous material volume or location. The Calgary Emergency Management Agency (CEMA) supports the restricted circulation of such information pertaining to where ammonia is stored, and the volumes at that site, due to security issues.

    If you have any questions about City of Calgary facilities, please call 311.

  • Improvements to 1 Street S.W. celebrated 9 November 2017
    Victoria Park BIA Executive Director David Low

    Even though winter has now arrived in Calgary, David Low, Victoria Park Business Improvement Area’s Executive Director, is still eager to get out on his daily walking tours. These days he seems to be more energized than ever after his walks.

    That’s because the project to improve the streetscape along the Beltline’s 1 Street S.W. corridor between 10 Avenue to 17 Avenue S.W. is now substantially complete.

    Low says the City of Calgary has done an outstanding job of improving the streetscape and in connecting with the businesses and property owners along this corridor. “I’ve appreciated how the project team put such emphasis in working with all the stakeholders while working hard to complete these improvements over the past six months.”

    The City and Victoria Park BIA will jointly celebrate this important milestone on Thursday, Nov. 9 as City and BIA representatives plan to distribute cookies at the corner of 1 Street and 13 Avenue S.W. starting at 4 p.m.

    On Friday, Nov. 10 an ‘experiential’ lighting demonstration will be held on 1 Street between 12 and 13 Avenues from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. We’d like to hear your feedback about how these state-of-the-art colour changing lights add to the streetscape atmosphere.

    Improvements to the corridor include:
    • wider sidewalks & prominent crosswalks
    • upgraded LED pedestrian and street lighting
    • 41 new tree plantings
    • additional bike racks & 14 new on-street parking spaces
    • centre median with a banner pageantry program.

    “These improvements build on the character of the blocks located between 12 and 14 Avenues, extending that streetscape design along the full length of the corridor,” said Graham Gerylo, Urban Strategy project manager with the City. “This work has created a safer, more comfortable and inviting environment for the thousands of pedestrians and transit riders that travel along 1 Street each day.”

    New banners along 1 Street SW

    The City accelerated capital funding for this project as part of the City’s economic stimulus efforts. Final project costs are estimated to be around $5 million, which is more than $1 million under the original budget estimate. Both Gerylo and Low agree that the project is an investment in the street and local economy with the goal of continued community revitalization by attracting private developments, new businesses and more residents to the area.

    For more details on the project, visit

  • Midfield Mobile Home Park: What You Need to Know 6 November 2017
    Update: An Application has been filed with the Court by Mathew Farrell of the Guardian Law Group, on behalf of residents of Midfield Mobile Home Park, seeking to challenge the validity of a termination notice dated September 15, 2016. A Court Order was granted September 25, 2017 confirming that the Application will be heard before a Justice on November 22, 2017 at 2:00pm.  While the closure of the park remains as September 30, 2017 at 12:00 p.m., the effect of the Order confirms that remaining residents will be permitted to remain on their mobile home sites until the hearing on November 22, 2017. 
    As of November 6th, 170 pads in Midfield Mobile Home Park are currently vacant and 13 pads are occupied. Of those that are occupied, approximately five tenants are finalizing plans, and one is currently involved in a court process.   Approximately seven tenants have not yet come forward with a plan to move.


    In May 2014, tenants of Midfield Mobile Home Park (Midfield) were provided over three years advance notice of City Council’s decision to close the mobile home park on September 30, 2017.

    Closing Midfield was a necessary reality as the sanitary sewers and the water main are 40+ years old and now at significant risk of catastrophic failure. Such a failure would cause immediate and extreme disruption to the lives of all tenants. It would also result in significant costs relating to emergency response and accommodation. Simply put, The City could no longer delay closure.

    The decision to close Midfield Mobile Home Park was not taken lightly. Over the years, much consideration had been given to the future of the park and more importantly, the welfare of its tenants. However, it became clear to City Council and Administration that Midfield’s closure was the only viable option given the poor and deteriorating state of the park’s infrastructure.

    In closing Midfield, we recognize that Calgary is losing a very close-knit community, one with a rich history and one where neighbours take care of each other. It is an unfortunate outcome; we empathize with Midfield tenants and will continue to work to make them aware of the available support, resources and housing options.

    A Brief History of Midfield

    Midfield was first developed on land leased from The City in 1968 by a private developer who subsequently turned over its operations to The City in 1973. Calgary Housing Company has been operating Midfield since 2001. A 2002 engineering report initially identified the deteriorating state of Midfield’s entire infrastructure (ie. sewers, water main) and recommended replacement.

    Initial discussions with Midfield tenants regarding the park’s infrastructure took place in 2005 at an information session hosted by The City. This was followed by an open house and special meeting with a Committee of Council in 2006 that provided tenants with an opportunity to discuss six options being considered by The City to address the failing infrastructure. In 2007, The City committed to operating the park and repairing the infrastructure to the year 2012 while a relocation plan was being developed.

    In 2009, The City acquired land in east Calgary for the purposes of developing a new mobile home park (ie., East Hills Estates). Midfield tenants were informed of these intentions in March 2010. However, re-examination of the East Hills Estates development plan and its projected costs revealed significant challenges and increasingly prohibitive costs. This eventually led to the difficult decision by City Council to cancel the project in 2013.

    In 2014, tenants were informed of the decision to close Midfield on September 30, 2017 and of the cancellation of the East Hills Estates project. Recognizing these decisions would be highly disruptive and difficult for Midfield tenants, The City opted to provide them access to a multitude of resources and supports that met their specific needs. This work has been ongoing over the past three-and-a-half years.

    Midfield will close on September 30 2017. Afterwards, while The City will undertake legal proceedings regarding remaining tenants, The City will continue to work to make those tenants aware of available housing options and to connect them to appropriate resources specific to their individual needs

    Closure Facts

    • Replacement and/or repair of Midfield’s infrastructure is impractical and prohibitively expensive, given the logistics of removing the mobile homes and other structures in order to access the water and sewer lines beneath. 
    • Over the years, the cost to repair, maintain and operate Midfield have only increased over time.
    • Approximately one-third of the inspected portion of the sanitary network is in an advanced stage of deterioration, requiring urgent action.
    • Midfield is being closed to disconnect and remove the failing water and sanitary sewer network and to remove any existing improvements.

    Summary of City Support and Resources

    • Through the Midfield Closure Program, The City is assisting Midfield tenants with costs associated in relocating. This included a lump sum payment of $10,000, legal fees up to $500, and up to $10,000 to cover the cost of either moving or demolishing a mobile home. 
    • Whether in meetings or through one-on-one conversations, City staff, along with an external agency, have been making themselves available on a daily basis to help tenants with their specific needs, to answer their questions, and to connect them to appropriate resources. In the Midfield office, tenants have access to information on housing options and to a computer to help with housing searches. 
    • The Calgary Housing Company (CHC) has provided extensive support to Midfield tenants in finding potential alternative housing arrangements, including a concerted effort on CHC’s part to tour Midfield tenants through CHC properties. Various CHC staff have been onsite throughout this process including CHC Leasing Agents who continue to meet with Midfield tenants to provide information about CHC housing options and to help them complete CHC applications and forms. 
    • Perhaps more importantly, CHC has concerned itself with those tenants with low-moderate incomes in Midfield, as well as anyone else who requests help from CHC. In addition to making the availability of a new housing development in Bridgeland known to qualifying tenants on rent reduction, CHC staff have reached out to those same people to ensure they are aware of available housing options and connect them to appropriate resources. 
    • As result of these their efforts, CHC has been able to place 15 Midfield tenants in CHC accommodations thus far. CHC staff will remain available with information and assistance concerning housing options through the completion of the closure process. 
    • For well over three years now, the services of Homewood Health have also been made available to Midfield tenants. In addition to providing counselling and social support services, Homewood Health provides information on other rental or housing opportunities, connects Midfield tenants to social and housing agencies and resources, and provides assistance in completing what can be cumbersome applications and form. 
    • Over the years, Homewood Health has made concerted efforts to reach out to Midfield tenants. They have held housing information sessions where various housing providers were made available on-site to meet with tenants and review the numerous housing options available. In 2014 and 2015, Homewood Health called all Midfield tenants who were seniors, on AISH or rent reduction program to offer their support and counselling services. Finally, Homewood Health will reach out to remaining Midfield tenants once more, via door knocking, to offer their services before the September 30th closure date. 
    • As vacant lots become more commonplace with fewer ‘eyes on the street’, security and safety becomes a concern. Given this, The City introduced on-site security at Midfield which is now 24/7, and have installed fencing around Midfield this summer as an added security feature. 
    • Calgary Neighbourhoods will offer additional social work supports to Homewood Health, who is contracted to provide counselling and support to tenants, should capacity to meet the need of residents within the timeframe of September 30th become an issue. 
    • The City has frozen rent increases since 2008 to enable Midfield tenants with an opportunity to save money to pay for costs associated with their moves and finding alternative accommodations. 
    • The City has made an Advisor available to counsel Midfield tenants on financial and debt management matters on an as-requested basis. 
    • The City is making assistance available to those Midfield tenants who need help packing their belongings. 

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Why is Midfield Park closing?

    Midfield is closing because it is challenged by aging and failing infrastructure. Unlike typical residential neighbourhoods, the water and sewer lines are located underneath the tightly spaced mobile homes, making access, repair and/or replacement of those lines impractical. It would also be prohibitively expensive given that accessing that infrastructure would require that the mobile homes, garages and other structures be removed.

    Did Council consider other alternatives to closing the park?

    The status of Midfield Park has been debated for many years by City Councils who have taken great care and consideration in evaluating the situation. As far back as 2005, The City has engaged Midfield tenants towards considering several options in addressing the Park’s many challenges. Considerable time was taken to closely review and evaluate all feasible options before Council was in a position to make a final decision.

    Why did The City decide not to pursue development of the new park East of The City?

    City Council reviewed the feasibility of the East Hills project and determined that there were several outstanding planning issues relating to:

    • the preparation and approval of the area structure plan; 
    • the extension of utility services to the East Hills Estate lands; 
    • provision of a fire station in the vicinity of East Hills Estate lands; and 
    • provision of storm water management for the entire area. 

    Additionally, East Hills Estates could not be completed in the time frame originally proposed. Lastly, but most important, the costs to complete the East Hills Estates had increased significantly from the original estimate and budget. As result, City Council determined that the project was not feasible.

    In making the decision to close Midfield Park, was consideration given to the welfare of its tenants?

    Council did take into account the challenges faced by the tenants but it also has a responsibility to balance that with the interests of all Calgarians. Accordingly, Council opted to inform tenants three years in advance of Midfield’s closure, to provide assistance through the Midfield Closure Program, and to provide social services and housing supports through Homewood Health and Calgary Housing Company. Private operators will not generally provide this level of support when closing a mobile home park.

    Are Midfield tenants being assisted financially to help them move?

    Tenants were offered the Midfield Closure Program which includes a lump sum payment of $10,000, legal fees up to $500, and a maximum of $10,000 to cover the cost of either moving or demolishing a mobile home.

    Why isn’t The City offering market value for tenant’s mobile homes?

    The City opted not to buy out tenants’ mobile homes. Instead of buy-outs, The City opted to assist Midfield tenants through the Midfield Closure Program, which includes a lump sum payment of $10,000, legal fees up to $500, and up to $10,000 to cover the cost of either moving or demolishing a mobile home. Tenants who own their mobile homes have the option of relocating them if it is feasible to do so.

  • Historic City Hall wrap: protecting workers and the building from the elements 1 November 2017
    As the temperatures plunge in Calgary this winter, the heritage rehabilitation of Historic City Hall continues full force ahead, regardless of ice, snow or sleet.
    What is the purpose of the enclosure around Historic City Hall?
    In May, 2017, the building was enclosed in a standard protective covering that contains the construction crew, equipment and materials. The enclosure provides overall project cost avoidances and plays a key role in the fulfillment of project timelines as the heavy duty wrap shields the workers from outdoor elements and keeps in heat, allowing us to work year round regardless of weather. In addition, this enclosure – which allows no water penetration – is vital in helping to protect the sandstone and exposed building components from the weather.
    Inside the wrap, the crew working on Historic City Hall will remain warm throughout the winter. In order to ensure that building components don’t freeze – and that our mortar cures properly – the temperature inside the wrap is a minimum of 10 degrees Celsius, rising to about 20 degrees in the upper floors.
    By protecting the workers and building from outdoor elements like snow, rain and extreme heat, we are able to work year round and avoid costly weather-related project delays. As well, enveloping the entire building at once as opposed to covering individual portions as work progresses is far more cost effective. The cost of the enclosure in its entirety – including materials, printing, and installation – was approximately $165,000 or $5.16 per square foot. This equals about $55 per day over the remaining three years that it will be in use.
    Why is there imagery on the enclosure?
    Imagery on protective enclosures is an industry standard for long term heritage rehabilitation projects, particularly when a building will be hidden from public view for years. Because Historic City Hall will literally be “under wraps” until 2020, we thought it fitting to use imagery that replicates the original appearance of City Hall. Given the Canada 150 celebrations that took place on Olympic Plaza and the Municipal Plaza this year, the imagery is also a fitting tribute to Canada’s historic anniversary.

    Where else have they used images like this on historic buildings?
    Examples of other heritage projects that are using or have used imagery on enclosures include: the Washington Monument, the U.S. Capitol Building and the U.S. Supreme Court Building (all in Washington D.C). This interesting article in Smithsonian Magazine describes some of those facades. New York’s Plaza Hotel had imagery on its enclosure during its renovations as did New York’s Whitney Museum of American Art. Like Calgary’s Historic City Hall, the Sydney Town Hall in Australia had a similar imaged façade during its heritage rehabilitation. Philadelphia’s Independence Hall is another good example of imagery used during a historical restoration.
    Both the scaffolding and the enclosure surrounding it are expected to remain in place until February, 2020, near the planned project conclusion of July, 2020. Please visit for project updates and historic photos and stories of Historic City Hall. 
  • Rocky Ridge Recreation Facility construction reaches key milestones 31 October 2017

    On October 20, the new Rocky Ridge recreation centre reached a key milestone and was handed over to the Calgary YMCA. The new facility, Shane Homes YMCA at Rocky Ridge, officially opens to users on Jan. 15, 2018.

    The coming months will see the facility’s new operator, YMCA Calgary, move into the space and furnish it with all the amenities it will need to open to the public. YMCA Calgary won a competitive bid to operate and maintain the space. Providing services in a City-owned facility ensures the sustainability of the facility without the direct need for additional tax dollars.

    The project recently reached Substantial Completion, meaning that the facility is ready to be occupied apart from any last fixes and finishes required to ensure that the facility functions as expected. A few final pieces of the construction, such as the outdoor skatepark and finishing the park spaces, will be completed over the course of the summer of 2018.

    The new facility brings much-needed recreational opportunities and public space to Calgary’s northwest. Situated in a natural park and reconstructed wetland, the 284,000-square foot building will provide individuals, families and teams access to indoor pools and a waterpark, an ice skating surface and an NHL-sized hockey rink, a fitness centre, 3 full gymnasiums, 160-metre running track, library, art making and display spaces, a 250-seat theatre, childcare and much more. The award-winning design was created with input from local community associations, aboriginal groups and residents through a thoughtful engagement process.

    The Shane Homes YMCA at Rocky Ridge is the third of four facilities to be completed in communities across Calgary – a total investment of $480 million. A portion of the cost was contributed by the Government of Alberta as part of the Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI). The Remington YMCA and Great Plains Recreation facility opened in 2016. The Seton facility is scheduled to be completed in late 2018 and open to the public in Q1 2019.

    For more information and a full amenity list, please visit

  • Canada Task Force 2 returns from full-scale training exercise in Virginia 30 October 2017
    The Calgary Emergency Management Agency’s Canada Task Force 2 (CAN-TF2) disaster response team recently returned from participating in a full-scale heavy urban search and rescue (HUSAR) exercise with one of the leading disaster response teams in the United States, Virginia Task Force 1. CAN-TF2 members trained from Oct. 23-26 mentored by an elite and experienced international team, to further build its HUSAR expertise and capability to respond to a simulated earthquake in Nepal.

    A contingent of 74 volunteer members, including all heavy urban search and rescue specialties and members of the Incident Management Team, received incredible hands-on training in a variety of roles and scenarios using field facilities in Fairfax County, Virginia.  This experience was a unique and rare opportunity to learn from highly skilled teams, utilize state of the art training facilities, and work through complex HUSAR incidents. Scenarios were realistic, challenging and resulted in many lessons for future operations. 

    “We are so grateful to our funding partners to make training opportunities like this possible, keeping members trained to international standards and at the ready to help others when the call comes in,” says Tom Sampson, Chief of the Calgary Emergency Management Agency.

    The associated expenses were funded by the Alberta Emergency Management Agency, Public Safety Canada and the Kinsmen Club of the Stampede City.

    For more information, visit the CANTF2 webpage.

  • New City Council is sworn in 25 October 2017 The new Calgary City Council was sworn in on October 23, 2017. The Swearing-in Ceremony took place in the Municipal Building Atrium and the newly elected Council was led in by a bagpipe-led procession.

    Fifteen members of council were sworn in, including four newcomers, Jyoti Gondek (Ward 3), George Chahal (Ward 5), Jeff Davison (Ward 6), and Jeromy Farkas (Ward 11). Following the ceremony, an official photo of the new Calgary Council was taken on the atrium steps. Mayor Nenshi addressed the public following the ceremony; you can watch the full address below.

  • Update on Centennial Planetarium space 20 September 2017 The City of Calgary has been pleased to work with Contemporary Calgary over the past three years to work towards their vision to see the transformation of the former Centennial Planetarium (the former location of the Science Centre) into a future art gallery. This iconic building has both heritage status and symbolic value for Calgarians.

    In 2014, Contemporary Calgary was identified as the highest ranking candidate in the Request for Expression of Interest that sought ideas on arts, culture and heritage users of the building, although no applicant had the financial and organizational capacity to renovate and operate the planetarium. At the time, Contemporary Calgary was a recent amalgamation of three organizations (Art Gallery of Calgary, the Institute for Modern and Contemporary Art, and the Museum of Contemporary Art Calgary). The City developed an innovative approach with Contemporary Calgary to enable them to phase their move into the building to coincide with their development as a single organization, and to facilitate their capacity to progressively improve the planetarium space.

    This innovative plan included:

    1. The City renovating the planetarium to base building standard for $24.5 million by 2018.
    2. Leasing 8,000 of the 42,000 square feet of the planetarium to Contemporary Calgary now to replace their existing space.
    3. The City operating the renovated planetarium for an interim period as a multi-tenant cultural facility.
    4. Allowing Contemporary Calgary to lease the entire building after the interim period, subject to Contemporary Calgary satisfying the conditions described below.

    This approach would relieve Contemporary Calgary from the burden of having to operate the entire 42,000 square foot building and responsibility for the base building renovation. This would allow Contemporary Calgary to focus on fundraising and building their operational capacity.

    The City shares Contemporary Calgary’s vision to become the prime tenant for the building once key milestones and criteria have been met. From the beginning of our discussion with Contemporary Calgary, The City has made it clear that in keeping with Council-directed policy, the following criteria must be met:

    1. The Society provides confirmation that it has raised 90% of the capital dollars required to undertake tenant improvements for the project (current estimate to upgrade the planetarium from base building to gallery status is $32 million).
    2. The Society provides evidence, through audited financial statements and business plan, that its operating model will not require annual operating funds from The City. 
    3. The Society’s business plans, financial statements and governance structure meet The City’s requirements for leaseholders of City property.

    As a diligent steward of public property, The City requires all leaseholders to meet these conditions before entering into long-term lease agreements. Contemporary Calgary was aware of these criteria and requested that these criteria, along with confirmation that The City supported Contemporary Calgary’s vision, be set out in a letter from The City to share with potential donors. This letter was provided to Contemporary Calgary on Aug. 25, 2017.

    To help Contemporary Calgary achieve its vision, The City:

    1. Undertook, at a cost of $2.3 million, a study of the requirements to bring this 50 year old structure up to the standard of a contemporary cultural space.
    2. Developed a model for the planetarium as a multi-tenant cultural hub that would enable Contemporary Calgary to achieve Phase 1 of its plan, while simultaneously achieving the milestones that would enable it to enter into a longer lease for the entire building.
    3. Allocated $24.5 million of Cultural Municipal Sustainability Initiative (MSI) funding to renovate the base building. 
    4. Accepted the Society’s proposal to lease a portion of the building for three years with an option to renew, and to renovate 8,000 square feet of space to create a gallery for contemporary art. Access to parking and service areas are including in the short-term lease.
    5. Enabled Contemporary Calgary to hold fundraisers in the building over the past years by absorbing the opening and operating costs for these fundraisers.

    The partially-leased space, named “Temporary Contemporary,” was considered Phase 1 of achieving Contemporary Calgary’s vision. This phased approach was mutually agreed to, and promoted to Calgarians through Contemporary Calgary’s successive fund raisers.

    Over the past few years The City has made a significant investment in time and finances to support Contemporary Calgary’s vision, and is fully prepared to continue supporting this organization as it builds capacity to achieve its long-term vision. However, we would respect Contemporary Calgary’s decision to not proceed, and will continue our renovation of the Centennial Planetarium to become a multi-tenant cultural hub.

  • Volunteer opportunities with Calgary Parks this fall 13 September 2017
    With fall just around the corner, Calgary Parks is looking for volunteers to help take care and prepare City green spaces for winter. Throughout September and October, there are three different opportunities Calgarians can participate in.

    September 16 – Tree wiring in Pearce Estate Park

    Beaversplay an important ecological role in Calgary’s waterways, but they can also present some challenges especially when it comes to trees. The City’s practice is to strike a balance between the health of our parks and the well-being of beavers. So, to make trees and river parks unappealing to beavers, The City wraps tree trunks with metal wire. But we can’t do it alone.
    On September 16, citizens can volunteerwith Calgary Parks to help wrap trees in Pearce Estate Park.

    September 23 – Tree planting in Creekside Park

    Calgary Parks is partnering with TD Bank Group, as part of their TD Common Ground initiative, to plant trees in parks across the city. An opportunity to volunteer with this event on September 23 from 9 a.m. to noon at Creekside Park (12330 Symons Valley Rd NW) is now open to the public. To volunteer, please visit calgary.caand register under the TD Tree Days event listing.

    October 13 – Woody debris clean up in Griffith Woods

    Join The City of Calgary to help clean up wood debris in Griffith Woods. While some woody debris is beneficial, too much can negatively impact the forest. This volunteer opportunity is a way for citizens to help the natural environment and forest in the park remain healthy, and learn more about this sensitive and significant park. To learn more about volunteering for this event, visit Calgary Parks.
    The City offers many other opportunities for citizens to get involved in their community and help look after the city we all love. Consider becoming a volunteer, and visit for a list of wide range of volunteer experiences you can choose from. 
  • Questions about your water meter? We’ve got answers. 7 September 2017

    In most homes, there is a water meter that measures how much water is used each month, and the homeowner is then charged for the water used, as reported by the water meter.

    How do I know my meter is accurate?

    Water meters are mechanical devices – water needs to pass through the meter in order to record consumption. The City uses water meters that meet industry standards. Before The City receives meters, all meters are tested by the manufacturer at three different flow rates before distribution to certify the meter’s accuracy. The City also owns a state-of-the-art Water Meter Test Bench manufactured by MARS Company, an industry leader in meter testing technology. Calgary is one of a few municipalities to have that technology, and while other municipalities also test their meters, The City also measures the weight of the water passing through to further verify the accuracy of the meter.

    In rare cases, meters can register slightly higher volumes at certain flows than what is flowing through. In that rare event it would be a negligible increase, and it would be much more likely for a meter to register lower water consumption, as water meters tend to slow down as they age. This would result in a lower bill for the customer, not higher. Also, in this case it would not likely be a one-month error but rather show as a continuing pattern.

    It’s important to know that about 99.5 per cent of our over 350,000 customers receive monthly bills that reflect regular water consumption levels within their average range.

    Here is Chris Huston, Manager of Drinking Water Distribution, explaining how The City manages and maintains water meters for citizens.

    How can I check to see if my meter is operating properly?

    Your meter is typically located in the basement where your water service enters the home. The meter has numbers (looks similar to an odometer on a car) and a dial called a flow register. The dial and numbers shows water consumption. It’s easy to check if your meter is registering flow: have someone turn water on in the house, and watch as the flow register turns and registers consumption. If the flow register is turning and all fixtures are off, this could indicate that you have a leak. Use the high consumption checklist on to help troubleshoot the cause.

    Who can I contact if my water bill is much higher than usual?

    Every situation is unique, but it’s not unheard of to see an increase in your water use from one bill to the other. You can visit for more information or visit for a high consumption checklist that is an easy guide to help determine higher than usual water use.

    What can I do to make sure I don’t experience an unintentionally high spike in my water bill?

    Checking for leaks in and around your home will help ensure that you aren’t unintentionally consuming water. If you do find a leak or issue, it is important to fix it as soon as possible to avoid a high water bill associated with higher water use. Visit for a high consumption checklist, and for ways that you can save water. There are even more tips and ideas on how to save water around your home at

    Do you have more questions about your water meter or billing? Visit our FAQ here.

  • Back to school: keeping everyone safe on our roads 24 August 2017
    It’s back to school time!

    As school doors open, traffic gets a little heavier on our streets. People are back from holidays, school buses and public transit are on regular routes, and more people are walking, cycling or driving to school.

    To help with the transition and share the roads safely, read our safety tips. Help everyone stay safe this school year.
    1) Observe Playground Zone speeds

    Playground zones warn motorists to take extra caution and reduce speed when driving near playgrounds or schools. Remember that the maximum permitted speed in Playground Zones is 30 km/h. The zones are in effect from 7:30 a.m. until 9:00 p.m. every day of the year. Children do not perceive traffic like adults do – extra caution is needed.

    It is illegal to pass another vehicle within Playground Zones during zone hours. Drive carefully and watch for children.

    2) Watch for darting children

    Kids are small and easily distracted, and this can create dangerous situations on the roads. Be vigilant and alert behind the wheel. You never know when a small child might step out from between parked cars or off a sidewalk.

    3) School buses

    Make sure children wait at a safe location, well away from the road and stay back until the school bus makes a full stop and the doors open. Explain that they should cross the road at an intersection in a crosswalk, and show them how to cross safely. As parents or caregivers, consider parking on the same side of the road that the child is being dropped off on so the child isn’t tempted to cross mid-block.

    When driving your car near a school bus extra caution is needed; reducing your speed is recommended. If a school bus is stopped with its lights on then you can expect to see children.

    4) Travel by car

    Parents and guardians should respect their child’s school safety measures for dropping off and picking up their children at school. Every effort must be made to avoid collision and injury by refraining from creating hazardous situations of traffic congestion and unsafe driving practices within the school zone. Respect posted speed limits, and designated drop-off and pick-up areas. If possible park along the same side of the road so your child doesn’t have to cross the road – even if it is a longer walk.  Double parking, parking in crosswalks, parking within five metres of a crosswalk, backing into crosswalks, and not crossing at a crosswalk all create hazards and that is why they are prohibited by law.

    5) Travel by bicycle

    To ride a bicycle to and from school, without supervision, children must be mature enough (minimum 9 – 12 years old), and must have enough experience to interact with traffic safely. The rider should be able to scan ahead and check behind without swerving and know the rules of the road. See our bikeways and pathways map to plan your cycling route.

    6) Walking to school

    Many children walk to and from school. Parents and guardians must review road safety rules, as well as crosswalk safety with their children, and preferably walk the route with the children a few times to test their knowledge.

    7) CTrain safety

    Around our stations

    If you’re walking to one of our CTrain stations, make sure to look both ways for trains when crossing the tracks and, most importantly, obey all traffic signals. Motorists should also be aware of flashing lights and crossing arms when CTrains are passing through and not proceed until all lights and bells are off.

    Waiting for the train

    While waiting on the platform for the CTrain, please ensure you stand and remain behind the yellow line until the train has fully stopped. Never put any objects or limbs in the closing doors. Wait for fellow transit users to exit the train before get on and be courteous to others who may need more time to exit or enter the train.

  • The importance of pet licensing 21 August 2017 As good pet parents, we’re confident that our cat or dog will never get out of our reach because ‘we’re the boss’, but pet escapes happen to the best of us. Our furry friends slip through our legs when we open the door, make a run for it chasing after rabbits, or break out of the yard when a gate is mistakenly left open.

    The transitional period from the summer to fall is when the Animal Services Centre observes an increase in lost pets and strays through the shelter. This is often because it is a time of common transition; when people are leaving and returning from vacation and house sitters are monitoring pets, and when parents are busy getting children in and out of the door for a new year of school.

    The specialists at the Animal Services Centre can’t stress the importance of licensing your cat or dog enough, and offer the top reasons for doing so:

    1. It is cost efficient and easy

    Licensing and yearly renewal fees are inexpensive (and you can easily initiate or renew your pet licence online or by calling 311).

    2. It’s in the best interest of your cat or dog
    Think of licensing your pet as the ‘lost and found’ of one of your most important assets (your furry best friend!). Your animal’s identification provides vital information (which is linked through your cat or dog’s licence) that ensures a reunion (should your lost animal be housed at the shelter).

    3. It’s the law
    Every cat and dog in Calgary is required to be licensed under the Responsible Pet Ownership Bylaw 23M2006, subject to a specified penalty of $250.

    4. It is for the betterment of our city and animals
    The licensing fees support the care of homeless animals, returning lost pets home and veterinary services for pets in the care of Animal Services, among many other supportive services.

    The loaning of humane cat traps is also offered through Animal Services, so concerned Calgarians can help in the retrieval of lost or stray cats in their neighbourhood.

    5. The Pet Drive Home Program
    Through Animal Services’ Pet Drive Home Program, peace officers are able to return lost pets
    directly to their owners when found (through information linked to the animal’s licence or permanent identification). Over 2016 and 2017, approximately 7% of lost licensed cats and 28% of lost licensed dogs were returned to owners through the program.

    Animal Services’ goal is to provide assistance to protect the health and safety of Calgary communities and the animal population, while promoting responsible pet ownership and offering services such as animal adoption, a no cost spay/neuter program, education and volunteer programs, and a full service veterinary clinic for sheltered animals.

    Licence your animal in person at the Animal Services Centre, by phone (311) or online at

  • Exercising with a buddy can help you achieve fitness goals 18 August 2017

    It often feels that we’re bombarded with the latest health and fitness trends but did you know there is one trend that has outlasted all the rest? And has a successful track record?

    There is a growing amount of evidence that supports the ‘buddy system’ as highly effective in reaching your fitness goals. In several recent studies, researchers have found that exercising with friends (or in a small group) offers many benefits beyond just the physical ones.

    Patty Grant, a twenty year veteran in the fitness industry and Recreation Program Specialist with The City of Calgary says, “It’s true. People who exercise together become each other’s biggest cheerleaders. You share challenges and celebrate each other’s successes.” Additionally, adds Grant, “It can also boost our commitment levels because we don’t want to let each other down.”

    While there is firm evidence on the benefits of exercising together, what about the fact that doing things together is simply more fun? This aspect is not lost on Calgary Recreation. In our latest edition of the Fall Recreation Program Guide, there’s hundreds of fun, group fitness opportunities.

    Grant mentions ‘Rock Climbing for Pairs’ and “Warrior Women’ as two classes that are customized for small groups. Whereas fitness classes that accommodate larger groups such as ‘Triathlon Training’ or ‘YYC Barre’, “We encourage friends to register together.”

    Bottom line she adds “When you’re having fun and working towards the same goals, you end up with both social and physical benefits.”

    To search or coordinate your fall activities visit Programs begin September, so you have some time yet to round up a buddy or some teammates!

  • Keeping Calgary free of cigarette waste: #buttfreeYYC 15 August 2017

    Smoker or non-smoker, you’ve likely witnessed someone flicking a cigarette butt –­­ disposing of cigarette waste improperly (yes, that is a littering offense), or you have walked by butts that are the casualties of smokers in city streets.

    While in recent years Calgary has been reported as one of the cleanest cities in the world, publications such as National Geographic have decreed cigarette butt waste as the world’s number one litter problem, and the proof is visible in municipalities like ours.

    Not only is this an infraction of City bylaws, it’s an injustice to fellow citizens; not to mention hazardous to our environment, sidewalks, streets, pathways, wildlife and pets. In some areas, the accumulation of cigarette waste is a priority concern, and while we have many systems in place to manage waste effectively, the solution begins with citizen responsibility when it comes to littering.

    We are a proud city and we want to maintain the standard of cleanliness and safety we work toward collectively, so we are looking to Calgarians to help us maintain a #buttfreeYYC.

    The law & littering

    Improper disposal of cigarette butts is non-compliant with littering associated bylaws, including the Street Bylaw (section 17) and the Parks and Pathways Bylaw (section 27).

    From the Calgary Community Standards perspective; leaving litter, garbage or other waste material on private or public property is a violation, as these bylaws help keep communities and public areas clean and safe.

    In summary, the bylaws state:

    • Waste must not be disposed of on any public property, aside from in an appropriate receptacle. 
    • The improper disposal of burning material, including lit cigarettes, will result in an increased fine. 
    • If a vehicle is involved in a littering offence, the registered owner of that vehicle may be charged. 
    • Fines for violations of these regulations range between $500 and $1000. 

    Throw it away: proper disposal

    Cigarette butt waste at home

    The proper measures to discard of cigarette butt waste are:

    1. Cigarette butts should go in the black cart as garbage (they are not compostable). Ensure the cigarette is extinguished before throwing away.
    2. Cigarette ashes need to be double bagged, tied closed and thrown away in the black cart as garbage.
    3. Never flush cigarette butts or cigarette ashes down your toilet, sink or drain as they are harmful to the environment and may cause damage to the pipes in your home.
    4. Cardboard cigarette packaging goes in the blue bin for recycling.

    Recycling cigarette butts

    Yes, cigarette butts are recyclable! There are eco-friendly recycling companies that specialize in difficult-to-recycle waste streams and offer solutions to these problems. Calgary is one of six Canadian cities with businesses and communities working to recycle cigarette butt waste, including many Business Improvement Areas (BIA) lead incentives.

    In 2016, the International Avenue BRZ purchased six cigarette recycling units that they installed in key areas where a need was identified. Their team removed an average of 2,700 cigarette butts from the units monthly. The Calgary Downtown Association also utilizes a recycling program and collected 53,000 units of cigarette waste to recycle last year alone.

    Receptacles can be ordered through the recycling companies directly for your community or business location. For citizens looking to recycle independently; cigarette butts, ashes, and the foil and plastic found on cigarette packaging can be collected and mailed using a free shipping label through the same recycling programs.

    The end products of these programs include a variety of industrial products and objects (such as park benches or plastic pellets). Remaining tobacco is also recycled as compost.

    Cigarette waste receptacles

    The city centre is populated with BIA managed cigarette butt receptacles for citizens to utilize in the downtown area. In addition to these receptacles, many communities and businesses self-manage receptacles for proper waste disposal or recycling purposes.


    The leading cause of outdoor fires within Calgary is the improper disposal of smoking materials. As well, residential fires that start outdoors are among the most dangerous as they are often not detected by indoor home smoke alarms until the fire is well underway. As a safety protocol, the Calgary Fire Department encourages citizens to ensure that smokers in your home douse cigarette butts and ashes with water before placing them into a non-combustible container.

    As an added safety precaution, it is also imperative that smokers do not ash out or dispose of cigarette butts in planters, mulch or flower beds. The components of soil include organic material and can easily smolder for hours before igniting.

    It starts with you. Please think twice before you flick and dispose of your cigarette butt waste properly to help us maintain a #buttfreeYYC. Our goal is to see butts in bins and receptacles, not on streets, in tree grates or rivers.

    Filing a complaint. If you witness a bylaw infraction and would like to report it, please call 311 (from within Calgary) or 403-268-CITY (2489) (from outside Calgary).

    Join the conversation. We encourage citizens to suggest areas that would benefit from added cigarette waste receptacles by joining the discussion on social media with #buttfreeYYC.

    Consider recycling. If you’re a local business owner or a community representative, consider initiating a cigarette waste recycling program.

  • City of Calgary takes cREative new approach to construction 31 July 2017 Work on 17th Ave to replace water and sanitary lines, repair and rebuild the road and make public realm improvements including new sidewalks, benches, trees and street lights is well underway. Crews are almost halfway through the first year of construction and The City has developed with a new, unique way to help support business on 17 Avenue through this major construction.

    The cREative Realm is a new program developed by Blank Page Studio in collaboration with The City of Calgary to support businesses through the creation of artwork along the Avenue that will encourage interactive, playful experiences that will draw Calgarians to the area.

    “Unlock by Joanne MacDonald

    “A major consideration we made before starting construction on 17th Ave is how we could support business owners and make sure construction had as little impact on their businesses as possible,” said Logan Tolsma, Senior Transportation Engineer. “We’re making sure that Calgarians can still access 17th Ave during construction and cREative Relam will let people know they can still come down and do all the things they want to do on 17th Ave and more.”

    Artists will be working with The City and local stakeholders to respond to the unique situation of major construction in a vibrant, beloved area, using the characteristics of each block to inspire their art.

    “The cREative Realm offers opportunities for Calgarians to question, participate, explore and enjoy 17th Ave through the duration of construction with the production and programming of site-specific creative projects,” said Daniel Kirk, lead artist of the cREative Realm. “This creative process offers support to business by encouraging community engagement and excitement along the corridor during the construction season.”

    There will be at least four different projects that pop-up along the Avenue this year between Macleod Trail and 4 Street S.W. for Calgarians to enjoy and interact with.

    A bronze marker for 200 Stories

    200 Stories – Laura Reid, Mark Limacher and Matt Knapik
    200 Stories is the first season of a project called City High Fortune. It is comprised of six audio episodes linked to locations on the 200 block of 17th Avenue SE. Guided by bronze survey markers installed in the ground, the public is invited to participate in a digital auditory tour of the space. City High Fortune collects histories, curiosities, futures, and fictions; it creates new possibilities for place through music, storytelling, and sound.

    200 Stories is available now, with new episodes being released weekly. You can already find the bronze markers on the south side of 17 Avenue between Macleod Trail and 1 Street S.E.

    Keys hanging from Unlock

    Unlock – Joanne MacDonald
    Unlock is a temporary installation that will use construction and recycled keys collected from Calgarians and local business owners to form a canopy of dangling, flowing keys over the sidewalk on 17th Avenue between 1 Street S.E. and Centre Street. Drawing on its symbolism, the humble key will bring light to the area and business community by the individual and unique meaning and representation of each key suspended within the installation.

    Unlock is now on 17 Ave. Stop by and hang your own spare key!

    Kaleidoscope Eyes – Rebecca Reid, Randi-Lee Ross and Ryan Bourne
    Kaleidoscope Eyes will enhance the experience of 17th Ave between Centre Street and 1 Street S.W. by altering perception by using visuals, music and immersive art making with the intent of changing the way that Calgarians view a cityscape and the construction around them.

    The artists will build a large scale kaleidoscope that will be accessible to the public at multiple events later this summer. The kaleidoscope will show the viewer either coloured glass etchings or collages of photos of 17th Ave. While the kaleidoscope is on display during construction the public will be invited to events where they can use the kaleidoscope.

    Kaleidoscope events will begin in mid-August.

    Connect – Michael and Laura Hosaluk
    Connect is a furniture based installation that will be built live in front of Calgarians on 17th Avenue between 1 Street S.W. and 2 Street S.W. by world-renowned creative wood turner, Michael Hosaluk and his daughter Laura. Over the course of a week the artists will create hundreds of spindles using a bicycle powered laithe to create a sculpture. Calgarians and local business owners will be invited to help paint and connect all the spindles in a way that reflects their experience with the construction on 17th Ave.

    Connect will be built between August 11-17.

  • City’s new planning Notices aim to hit the mark with citizens 27 July 2017 Calgarians are often interested in learning more about applications to redesignate (rezone) a land use, or develop a site in their community. To inform Calgarians about these applications, The City of Calgary places a Notice (sign) on the property.

     A new Notice is being piloted this summer, and The City wants to know what citizens think about the new design. Last year alone, The City posted Notices for 1, 377 development permits and 436 land use redesignations.

    New template for Notice Posting

    “We want to build Calgary together. We can do this by helping citizens learn about an application, and encouraging them to get involved,” says Brandy MacInnis, senior special projects officer with The City’s Planning & Development department.

    “Thanks to the input received last year, the Notices were improved and The City is seeking citizen input to ensure it is simple, informative and directs Calgarians to resources to learn more or get involved,” notes MacInnis.

    A larger version of the notice is being piloted this summer and measures four feet by eight feet. These Notices may be used for large scale redesignation or development permit applications. In addition, a number of smaller Notices, measuring two feet by three feet, will be piloted in communities in Calgary.

    A few changes made to the Notices include:

    1. Plain language text that describes the proposed redesignation or development permit application.
    2. Visual map that clearly identifies the property included in the proposed application.
    3. Clear direction to resources to learn more or to get involved. 

      “We want to validate these improvements with Calgarians, so we’re hoping they’ll take a quick and easy survey before September 15, to tell us what they think,” says MacInnis.

      Calgarians are encouraged to take an online survey or provide comments at an upcoming Planning & Development event.

      Take our quick five minute survey by visiting

    1. Construction underway on Calgary’s BRT network 26 July 2017 Construction on Calgary’s new Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) network is underway!

      We broke ground on the 17 Avenue S.E. BRT in April and have begun building the new BRT stations for the North and South Crosstown BRT projects. Soon, we will begin construction on the northern portion of the Southwest BRT project.

      We appreciate your patience while we’re building these new transit projects. You might experience some inconvenience in construction areas, but we are confident that the end result – faster, more reliable transit service across all four quadrants of the city – will benefit all Calgarians, whether you travel by foot, bike, bus or car.

      North and South Crosstown BRT – Station Construction

      While the new BRT stations are under construction, some existing bus stops may be closed or temporarily re-located. These closures and re-locations will last about six to eight weeks. Check and watch for signage at your stop.

      Here’s what the new stations will look like:

      17 Avenue S.E. BRT – Ongoing Construction

      Construction is in full swing on International Avenue and we’ve started work on the bridges to connect the BRT into Inglewood. When the project is complete in 2018, 17 Avenue S.E. will have dedicated transit lanes, wider sidewalks, boulevards, and a multi-use pathway to connect 17 Avenue to the Western Headworks canal and the Bow River pathways.

      Southwest BRT – Construction North of Glenmore Trail

      The City will be starting construction on a transit only lane in the road right of way at the southeast corner of the Crowchild Trail and Glenmore Trail S.W. interchange in the next few weeks. Once the BRT service starts in 2019, the new road will only be used by BRT buses during times of congestion on Crowchild Trail to the Glenmore Trail flyover.

      For more information on the project, visit

    2. The goats are back! 20 July 2017 For the next week, a herd of approximately 200 goats will be dining on weeds in Confluence (West Nose Creek) Park as phase two of The City’s targeted grazing program begins.

      Phase one was undertaken in 2016, and we’re excited about the results. So far we’ve learned that goats can be used in an active park without disrupting park visitors’ enjoyment of the park, whether on foot, on bicycle, or with a leashed dog. Preliminary signs also indicate that the goats have done an excellent job targeting a significant volume and variety of invasive weeds such as Canada thistle, hound’s tongue, and hawkweed.

      Phase two of this pilot program sees the goats return to Confluence Park so we can analyze the long-term success of using targeted grazing as a weed management tool. We will be focusing on how effective the goats are at controlling certain weeds, and how well they can do that without impacting the native vegetation we want to keep in the area. The goats will be visiting the park a week at a time, for three different weeks throughout the summer.

      If you see the goats grazing while you’re in the park, please keep your distance and obey the shepherd at all times. Remember to keep your dog on-leash as Confluence Park is an on-leash park (there is a fenced off-leash area near the parking lot). These goats are working and when people interact with them it disrupts their work and can cause them distress.

      If you are interested in learning about this pilot project please visit us online at

    3. 13 deserving Calgarians receive recognition at the 2016 Calgary Awards 19 July 2017
      On June 28, The City of Calgary presented 13 awards to recipients at the 2016 Calgary Awards. Mayor Nenshi and members of City Council were in attendance to recognize the many deserving recipients at the ceremony.

      The Calgary Awards showcase The City’s priorities of community, the environment, accessibility, and arts and culture.

      Highlights from this year’s awards include the Community Advocate Award presented to Cheri Macaulay, and The Citizen of Year award to Dr. Lucy Miller for her outstanding contributions to the community. The Signature Award, recognizing an individual who has brought significant recognition to the city, was awarded to Robert Brawn.

      Citizen of the Year Award : Mayor Nenshi, Dr. Lucy Miller

      Each year, individuals, corporations, community groups and organizations are nominated in five major award categories. It is one of the largest citizen recognition programs in the city.

      “It was such an honour to present this year’s Calgary Awards to some of the very best people and organizations in this great city. The leadership and commitment to community shown by the recipients is an inspiration for me and many, many people,” said Mayor Nenshi following the ceremony. “They make Calgary better every day, and I’m proud to call them fellow citizens.”

      Grant MacEwan Lifetime Achievement Award:
      Mayor Nenshi, Dr. Babins- Wagner and Grant MacEwan’s
      granddaughters Lynwyn Foran-Aebli and Fiona Foran

      The City thanks the following sponsors for their continued support of The Calgary Awards: Oil City Press, The University of Calgary, Husky Energy and Shaw TV.

      All Calgarians are encouraged to look to their neighbours, colleagues, community leaders and local organizations and businesses for those who could qualify as recipients of the Calgary Awards.

      Nominations for the 2017 Calgary Awards will launch in January 2018. Visit for more information.

    4. 2017 Calgary Stampede & Parade – getting around and staying safe 6 July 2017 It’s that time of year when many Calgarians step out of their suits and into their boots, spontaneously yell “yahoo” and consume more deep fried food in one sitting than the rest of the year combined. As the Calgary Stampede approaches, we’re here to help you get there and stay safe.
      Photo courtesy of Alexandra Chubachi


      Biking & walking
      From Friday July 7 to Sunday, July 16, cycling will be restricted on Stephen Avenue from 10:30 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. If you are riding your bike, please dismount and walk it during this time.

      24 Hour CTrain Service
      ‘Round the clock service begins Thursday, July 6, evening and ends late in the evening on Sunday, July 16.
      CTrain Schedule during Stampede:

      • Every 5 – 8 min. – 6:00 a.m. to 12:45 a.m.
      • Every 30 min. – 12:45 a.m. to 5:00 a.m.

      Discounted Transit Day Passes
      The transit day passes are available starting June 1 at our Customer Service Centres, 7-Eleven, Mac’s and Safeway stores. Adult day passes are $6.50, (reg. $10.00) and Youth day passes are $4.50 (reg. $7.00).

      During the 10 days of Stampede, day passes will also be available through ticket vending machines located at CTrain stations. To validate the pass, scratch the day you are travelling prior to boarding a CTrain or bus. The pass will be valid until 4 a.m. the following day.

      Road closures
      There will be a number of road closures to accommodate events all over the city during the Calgary Stampede (July 7-16).


      Parade day road & parkade closures, bus detours
      Road and parking impacts on parade day will include several parking lot closures. Spectators travelling to the Stampede Parade are encouraged to walk, bike or use transit to get into the downtown core.

      Find a comprehensive list of bus detours and info on how to take transit to the parade on Calgary Transit’s website.

      Road closures and bus route detours become effective at 7:30 a.m. and end around 2 p.m.

      Viewing the parade
      We’ve 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.


      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.

      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 Community Standards.
      • 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, Bylaw and CPS officers will be onsite and in communication for the duration of the Parade for immediate response.

      Other Useful Info


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