Monday, November 30, 2015

Planning & Development Map is here!

The City has launched a new user-friendly, online mapping tool to allow citizens to comment on and follow redesignation applications:

What’s New?
  • Social media sharing
  • Multiple search options
  • File status tracker
  • Plain language descriptions
  • Direct comments and feedback
  • Online and mobile access

Users can follow the progress of redesignation applications from submission through decision by City Council. The site includes plain language descriptions of redesignation applications and users can submit comments to City Planners and Council online. Applications can be searched by file number, address, community or ward. Layers can also be added or removed so that citizens can see the borders of their community and ward.

This data has been available before but hasn’t had the interactive functionality that this map provides. The comment/feedback features are new and a huge leap for citizen interaction and engagement on redesignation applications.

The map is online and mobile friendly and can be used on Android, iOS and Blackberry handheld devices.

What’s Next?
The site is in beta mode and City staff are continuously working to populate all application pages with plain language descriptions and application details. We encourage user feedback on the online and mobile versions of the site. Tweaks to the existing map, along with new features will be added over 2016, including more application types and file descriptions. Phase I of the release focuses on redesignation applications.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Online application process for subsidy programs now available

You can now apply online for City-subsidized programs from any computer, any time. The online Fair Entry application process makes it easier for low income Calgarians to access City services in a way that is respectful of time and dignity.

Fair Entry, launched in May, provides one window access to five City-subsidized programs for low-income Calgarians. It streamlines the process by reducing the need for repeated applications by citizens.

Overcoming obstacles

“Over 35,000 individuals have been approved since Fair Entry was launched six months ago,” says Cynthia Busche-heibert, manager community programs and services with Community & Neighbourhood Services. “People who may have previously faced obstacles to applying, like work schedules or childcare, are now able to overcome those challenges.”

See how the new application process has made a difference in one man’s life:

We anticipate providing subsidized services to roughly 75,000 Calgarians per year through Fair Entry and the convenience of the online process is going to make that easier and more efficient for Calgarians and The City

Apply online or find out more information on Fair Entry.

Submitted by Peter Jacoby, Community & Neighbourhood Services

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Lighting up your trees for the holidays? Stay safe and keep your trees healthy

It’s that time of year when you may start to decorate your home for the holidays. Lighting can look beautiful, but it is important to ensure your safety and the health of the tree comes first.
For your safety, we recommend you always:  

  • Ensure you use outdoor lights outdoors, and indoor lights indoors.
  • Ensure your outdoor lights have a sticker to show they meet CSA standards or are CSA approved. 
  • Never string more than the recommended number of lights together.
  • Know your limits when decorating. Make sure you have the right tools, such as appropriate ladder, for harder to reach areas. If you don’t feel comfortable, don’t do it. 

Here are some tips to help ensure your trees are safe and healthy too:

  • Hang the lights throughout the tree instead of wrapping each individual branch and/or trunk.
  • Remove lights promptly once the season is over. 
  • Electrical cords and items used to secure lights to the trunks and branches of trees can “girdle” them over time as they grow. Girdling occurs when wire or rope is wrapped tightly around the tree limiting the flow of water and nutrients.
  • If you are using a ladder, be careful not to damage the tree. If possible, stand your ladder up beside the tree rather than using the tree for support. Leaning it directly against the tree can damage the tree and make it more susceptible to pests and disease.  
  • When removing the lights, be gentle. Tugging the lights off may remove new tree buds or damage the tree's exterior, especially on younger trees that can be soft. 

Whose tree is it?

These are some tips for decorating trees on your own property. For trees on City property, there is a Tree Protection Bylaw, and the maintenance of these trees is the responsibility of The City.

Wondering if a tree on your property is a City tree? Visit the tree map.

For more information on what to do, how to get around and how to be safe during the winter season visit

Submitted by Allison Fifield, Parks

Monday, November 23, 2015

Be the first to know about snow and ice control this year

We’re a winter city, which means snow and ice are a part of life in Calgary. Whether you travel by bike, car, Transit or your own two feet, it’s important to stay safe, plan your route and know how the snow will affect your daily commute.

Calgary weather can change in an instant. Stay on top of snow and ice information so you can keep on the move, stay safe, and enjoy winter.

“While we are out clearing snow, citizens can see our progress through a number of different ways. This helps them plan their commute and stay safe,” says Roads Maintenance Manager Bill Biensch.

Here are the best ways to stay informed this winter about all things snow and ice:

Road Conditions Map
The map is available both online at and in the City of Calgary Roads app. Take a look at the snow clearing status of Priority 1 and Priority 2 roads across the city, and plan your route using traffic cameras and plow and sander locations.

City of Calgary Roads App
If you find yourself checking your mobile device throughout the day, the Roads App will be your best bet for finding snow and ice info. Check the weather, see an updated map of which roads have been plowed, and read updates during snow events. The app is available for iOS, Android and Blackberry.

Do you follow @yyctransport on Twitter yet? We tweet out snow clearing updates, road closures, safety tips, and more! If you have questions about road conditions, traffic, or other roads projects, we’ll find you the answers.
This webpage is your one-stop-shop for all things related to snow and ice clearing plus much more. Find out if a snow route parking ban is in effect, report a concern to 311, and read our snow clearing FAQs. On this page, you’ll also find information about pathway snow clearing and the Snow Angels shovelling program.

Snow and Ice Clearing Update Page
During a snow event, this page is updated daily at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Located at the top of our landing page, this is one of the best resources for snow and ice updates.
Explore what the City has to offer during winter! Learn about how to stay safe and keep active after the snow falls. The “Getting Around” button will link you to transit updates, winter driving tips, cycle track information, and a list of the City’s helpful apps.

Transit App
Planning your trip when the snow falls is easy with the City of Calgary Transit App. Stay on top of weather-related changes and look at route maps from your smartphone. The app is available for iOS and Android.

What are you waiting for? #GetMovingYYC

Registration starts today, Monday Nov. 23, for our Winter Programs – offering more than 3,000 registered programs to get you moving this winter.

We want to get more Calgarians, more active and creative, more often! Recreation offers a broad range of programs for Calgarians of all ages and with wide ranging interests. Finding something you enjoy will keep you motivated and moving all winter long.

Here are our top 10 “Get Moving” suggestions for Calgarians of all ages:
  1. Try it for a Toonie – Zumba Family & kids.  
  2. Funk- Dance 
  3. Adventure Fitness for Youth 
  4. Fitness Walking for 50+  
  5. Tai Chi (Yang Style) Introductory
  6. Stretching for Wellness 
  7. Guided nature walks 
  8. Learn to Skate – Adult level 1 
  9. Cricket for Youth
  10. Introduction to Snorkelling 

    Don’t be a bear about winter.  #GetMovingYYC !! No matter the weather we offer something to help make that perfect opportunity to get out, try new things and embrace our winter city.  Register today at