Out with the old … in with the new.
Years in the making, the final version of the city’s 50-year master plan for redeveloping Victoria Park is now complete and goes before the Calgary Planning Commission today.
At its heart, a new culture and entertainment district for our city. And more detail on the proposed new arena which could replace the Saddledome.
An earlier draft plan which included the Vic Park arena was released last year. But this is the one with the ‘t’s crossed and the ‘i”s dotted. If passed by the commission, it will go on to city council for approval.
“But wait,” you say, “I haven’t heard about any new city arena deal.”
No. No you haven’t.
City council has approved resuming talks with the owners of the Calgary Flames on a funding deal for a new arena but those talks still aren’t formally underway yet.
Still, the new Victoria Park plan and its maps present some grand visions for this special location.
A serious makeover
If you look at this plan, you see this is a massive overhaul of the areas east of Macleod Trail and south of the CP Rail tracks.
It’s bordered on the south and east sides by the Elbow River.
This is prime Calgary real estate.
Obviously, a new event centre and the soon-to-be-started, half-billion dollar expansion of the BMO Centre are big pieces of the puzzle.
There’s also the new opera centre, which was given $7.5 million in funding in the most recent city budget. Once federal and provincial matching funds are committed to it, that building will rise at the southeast corner of 12th Avenue and Fifth Street S.E.
Those are the showcase buildings. There are also plans for hotels and lots of new condos in decades to come.
The Calgary Municipal Land Corporation, which is overseeing the redevelopment process of the entire area, is also planning for a number of parks and urban plazas between all those shiny new buildings.
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