Grab your Calgary +15 Skywalk Map (Pocket Size) to view the hours of operation and location of all the +15 walkways.
Calgary's +15 Skywalk is a public pedestrian walkway system that links buildings throughout the Downtown and provides alternative routes for pedestrians to numerous and varied destinations.
The public access through private buildings enables pedestrians to travel in weather-protected walkways, approximately 15 feet above the street level. The +15 concept was intended to improve Downtown, providing additional pedestrian space and facilities, with no expense to the taxpayer.
Here are the +15 pedestrian counts:
The years that followed World War II, many North American downtowns experienced a decline in pedestrian activity. This was a result of lack of investment in the inner city infrastructure during the war, improvements and innovation in transport - including a significant increase in car ownership and the loss of retail stores to suburbs.
Although this impact was less pronounced in Canadian cities, it did provide the impetus for skywalks and the underground walkways which provided a convenient and secure pedestrian environment.
In Montreal, the local conditions favoured an underground pedestrian system which was started in 1962. At the same time, Minneapolis-Saint Paul in Minnesota started what was to become recognized as the original pedestrian skywalk system. In Calgary, the skywalk was chosen over the underground pedestrian system because of the high water table, proliferation of existing underground services and the cost of excavation.
The origins of Calgary's +15 Skywalk date back to 1963, but the concept was not realized until a downtown renewal initiative (Urban renewal Scheme No.1) in 1965. However, it was Harold Hanen who recognized the opportunities for Calgary and championed the +15 Skywalk in Calgary.
Although The City's original design specifications allowed for an open deck format, they were required to be structurally capable of being enclosed at a later date. However, it soon became clear that to maximize the public benefit of the system, it had to provide protection in the winter.
The first +15 bridge was installed on January 21, 1970, connecting Calgary Place to the Calgary Inn (now the Westin Hotel). By 1984, Calgary's +15 Skywalk consisted of 38 bridges, 8 km of walkways and numerous public spaces. Today there are more than 62 bridges and 18km of walkways.
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