Through most of Canada’s history, the majority of Canadians lived a rural life. After WWII
Canadians left their family farms and small towns and migrated to “the big city” in record numbers. This mass movement fueled urban growth and transformed Canada into an urban country.
Cities themselves have drastically changed in nature. The basket of services historically included the basics like roads, water, waste, fire, and police. Over time, what we consider basic services expanded to include recreation, planning and development, social services, affordable housing, and public transit.
Funding and delivering services in a growing city, to the satisfaction of residents, is no simple task. Municipal governments have grown to become large and sophisticated organizations. It is imperative that City departments act in lock-step with one another to ensure that the machinery works as smoothly and efficiently as possible. With this in mind, the City has created Build Calgary.
Build Calgary is a cross-functional approach to connecting projects, delivering services, and building the city. It is based in part on the model the City used to respond to the 2013 floods. Collaboration was essential in responding to that crisis and important lessons were learned on how to address other challenges.
The City is currently facing a time of financial instability due to a lack of reliable funding sources. As a result, our debt continues to grow. While incurring debt is not always a bad thing, having too much debt can limit the ability to be flexible and respond to emerging and unforeseen issues. Build Calgary can help place greater focus on decisions that improve the City’s fiscal position.
This new approach will guide how the City improves its financial situation through initiatives like establishing a City Charter, improved coordination with our regional neighbours, better management of our land and how it is developed, and ensuring that the cost of development is shared appropriately with those who profit from it.
As a just and prosperous city, Calgary is in a unique position. It is important that it is governed in a responsible manner by a thoughtful and effective Council. The extent to which Build Calgary is incorporated in our decisions will determine just how great Calgary can become.
This content represents the personal views and opinions of the Ward Councillor and should not be taken as a statement of policy of The City of Calgary. The inclusion of any external content does not imply endorsement by The City of Calgary.