Wednesday, July 26, 2017

City’s new planning Notices aim to hit the mark with citizens

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 calgary.ca/noticeposting

    Construction underway on Calgary’s BRT network

    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 calgarytransit.com/service-updates 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 Calgary.ca/BRT.

    Thursday, July 20, 2017

    The goats are back!

    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 calgary.ca/goats.

    Wednesday, July 19, 2017

    13 deserving Calgarians receive recognition at the 2016 Calgary Awards

    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 calgary.ca/calgaryawards for more information.

    Wednesday, July 5, 2017

    2017 Calgary Stampede & Parade - getting around and staying safe

    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

    STAMPEDE WEEK


    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).

    STAMPEDE PARADE DAY


    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.

    THE CITY IN ACTION


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

    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