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Evolution of Green Line

The story of the Green Line LRT has evolved with help from Calgarians over time. 

The need for an LRT line in southeast Calgary has been under consideration since the mid-1980s as communities in that area developed quickly. Rapid transit was envisioned for the north as early as 1967, and Centre Street N has evolved into the busiest bus rapid transit (BRT) corridor in the city. 

Planning for the Green Line as we know it today began in 2011. See what milestones, public open houses and engagement sessions helped shaped the timeline:

2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 |


New Green Line CEO (August)

The Green Line Board appointed Darshpreet Bhatti as CEO of the Green Line LRT project effective August 16, 2021.


Federal Government support announcement (July)

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau reconfirmed federal support of the Green Line LRT project and the redefined procurement strategy at an announcement in Calgary along with the Mayor and members of Calgary City Council. 


Government of Alberta approves Green Line LRT project (June)

Following an extensive review of the overall Green Line LRT project, the Government of Alberta approved the redefined procurement strategy and federal funding business case that was submitted to the province on May 28, 2021.The Green Line will be constructed through a new phased approach, with the first phase building the LRT from Shepard to Eau Claire.


Segment 2 Functional Plans (May)

The updated Segment 2 Functional Plan was presented to the Green Line Committee on May 19, 2021 and was approved. The plan included:

  • Functional plans for Beltline & Downtown and the Bow River bridge
  • Crescent Heights plans
  • Findings from North Central Mobility and Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) studies


Utility Relocation Project announcement (May)

The project to relocate utilities in east Beltline and Downtown will start. This project will make way for the main alignment construction of the tunnel, track and stations.


Segment 2 Engagement (January to April)

variety of virtual engagement opportunities  were conducted to help inform functional planning for project areas in segment 2 (4 Street S.E. to 16 Avenue North):

  • Downtown and beltline 
  • Crescent Heights (Streetscape Masterplan for Centre Street North and Crescent Heights Mobility Study)
  • North Central Mobility and Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) Studies
  • Bow River LRT bridge


Green Line Board (January)

The City announced the Green Line Board, comprised of nine members, who will govern, oversee and deliver the Green Line LRT project.


Updated Alignment engagement (January to April)

Stakeholders discussed challenges with the proposed Bow River tunnel and alignment changes. The Stage 1 alignment was updated to replace the tunnel with a bridge. The decision was made to construct Stage 1 in three segments:

  • Segment 1: 126 Avenue to Elbow River
  • Segment 2A: 2 Avenue S.W. station to Elbow River
  • Segment 2B: 16 Avenue N. to north of 2 Avenue S.W. station


Business Support Program (November)

Online engagement helped develop a Business Support Program. The goal is to help businesses and communities prepare for and manage the potential impacts of construction. A Business Insights Panel was recruited to advise on and share insights from the business community.


June 2020 – Council approved the updated Stage 1 alignment 

July 2020 – Council approved the Green Line governance structure

November 2020 – The TOD Implementation Framework received the Outstanding Planning for Human Settlements/Plan Making from the Commonwealth Association of Planners 


Public Gardens Scoping Report (April)

An informal Steering Committee helped develop a Public Gardens Scoping Report that sets a vision for

  • Adding greenery along the Green Line
  • Promoting art
  • Educating citizens
  • Creating outstanding public spaces

Council approved development of a master plan for six public garden projects. These projects were based on the historic railway gardens concept. 


Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Implementation Strategy (December)

The TOD Implementation Strategy enables TOD to thrive in Calgary. It identified four key actions:

  • Complete station area reviews
  • Develop funding and investment tools
  • Support the TOD policy
  • Foster collaborative partnerships


January 2019– Funding agreement signed by the Government of Canada, the Government of Alberta and The City of Calgary. 

July 2019 – Council approved the contracting strategy. 

July 2019 – Notice of Motion to form an informal Public Gardens Committee. They will explore a modernizing traditional Railway Gardens and the feasibility of using the Public Art budget to integrate art as part of the public gardens.



Green Line in My Community (GLIMC) engagement  (March)

Citizens attended events for the north, southeast, City Centre and Beltline alignments and gave insight into:


Refinement engagement  

Input gathered through GLIMC engagement was used to help refine various aspects of Green Line, like:

  • Land use planning
  • Alignment


Beltline Alignment engagement  (May)

Engagement sessions were held on four alignment options for Victoria Park. The transition to 10 Avenue S.E. was selected to connect the Beltline to the Ramsay/Inglewood station. This addressed traffic concerns and minimizes impacts to residential communities. 


Green Line LRT report  (May)

The Building the Core report established 126 Avenue S.E. to 16 Avenue N. as Stage 1. This met criteria like:

  • Stakeholder preparedness
  • Sufficient functional and initial designs
  • Procurement strategy aligned to the project objectives


Green Line Urban Integration (GLUI) framework  (June)

A 3-volume GLUI framework was developed that:

  • Sets guiding principles for how the Green Line LRT will fit within the community
  • Describes the look and feel of the LRT environments
  • Details how to apply the urban integration framework
  • This framework will be used by contractors building the Green Line.


City Shaping Framework  (June)

City Shaping is Layer 4 of the Green Line planning approach. The City Shaping framework outlined:

  • Guiding principles
  • Potential actions to improve quality of life for communities along the Green Line


Framework for Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Implementation Strategy  (June)

The TOD Implementation framework outlined the proposed approach and outputs for the strategy. Among the nine objectives was a City-wide perspective on TOD implementation that was adopted as part of The City’s TOD Program (presented to Council in 2019). 


2017 – The Integrated Transportation and Land Use Planning approach was shared at conferences in Canada, United States and Singapore.

June 2017 – Council approved Green Line LRT alignment and stations (160 Avenue N. to Seton).

July 2017 – Government of Alberta announced $1.54B funding commitment 


Centre City and Beltline engagement  

Feedback was collected to evaluate the Centre City and Beltline routes. This helped City Council decide to build a tunnel through this section of the alignment. In December, route options were narrowed through the Beltline to the 12 Avenue S. corridor. 


Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Background Research – North   

Green Line reviewed City policies, North American TOD best practices and conducted a GIS analysis of existing conditions and land use, which was used to help prioritize site selection.


Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Market Analysis – North   

Green Line estimated the long-term demand for different types of housing and office space. Implications for TOD options were identified along different parts of the corridor. 

Inglewood & Ramsay Area Redevelopment Plans (February to April)

The engagement results from the Green Line S.E. charrettes in 2015 were used as a basis for the Area Redevelopment Plans (ARP) for the Inglewood/Ramsay and 26 Avenue station areas. A public open house was held on February 10, and an information café was held on April 28.


Refinement engagement – North (March to June)

Workshops were held in northern communities. Feedback showed how the Green Line could help

  • Build community
  • Protect local businesses
  • Optimize station locations
  • Enable pedestrian and cycling access
  • Deal with safety, traffic and parking issues


Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Charrettes – North (April to October)

Three charrettes were held around development of Station Area Concept Plans for the north alignment:

  • 64 Avenue N. station
  • 40 Avenue N. station
  • Along the corridor for 9, 16 and 28 Avenues.

The concept plans were used to develop Station Area Plans, Local Area Plans and Area Redevelopment Plans. 


Green Line Speaker Series  (June to October)

Four sessions shared Green Line’s innovative approaches to:


Green Line Southeast Transitway Project – Public Information Sessions (January)

Three public information sessions were held for the Green Line Southeast Transitway Project. The purpose of these sessions was to inform citizens about the upcoming engineering and design work to be done, land use studies to be conducted, and outline how interested citizens can be involved in the process.

Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Charrettes – Southeast

Three charrettes were held around TOD options and development concepts for five stations:

  • South Hill
  • Ogden
  • Lynnwood/Millican
  • 26 Avenue S.E.
  • Ramsay/Inglewood

Citizen input helped clarify the scale and type of development for each station. Community issues and goals were worked into the conceptual designs, initial concepts and preferred development plan. 

Green Line Southeast Public Engagement Workshop (June)

Local residents shared their concerns and desires for the station area regarding existing community connectivity and area improvements.


January 2015 - Council approved the route of the North Central LRT on Centre Street North

May 2015 – Notice of Motion to outline the project delivery model for the Green Line LRT 

December 2015 - Notice of Motion for municipal commitment ($52 million for 10 years) to be extended to a 30-year period. The new total funding commitment would be $1.56 billion. This decision was based on the federal government pledge through the Public Transit Fund. It relied on a provincial government funding commitment that was confirmed in 2017. 


Alignment Development engagement

Citizens in southeast and north Calgary were targeted for feedback on potential routes. This led to refining the southeast route and choosing the Centre Street N. alignment. 


Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Background Research – Southeast

Green Line reviewed City policies, North American TOD best practices and conducted a GIS analysis of existing conditions and land use, which was used to help prioritize site selection.


Transit Oriented Development (TOD) Market Analysis – Southeast   

Green Line estimated the long-term demand for multi-family housing. Potential for new office space and TOD was identified along the corridor. 


March 2014 – Notice of Motion to conduct TOD scoping and planning with the pre-design process and community-based visioning.


North Central Route planning engagement (June)

675 participants attended public engagement. They identified community traits and values based on feedback from 2011. They also reviewed alignment options and benefits of low floor Light Rail Vehicles (LRVs).  


North Central LRT Alignment and Transit Oriented Development (TOD) (March)

The North Central Planning Study looked into land use planning for TOD from 2012 to 2014. It showed communities would be better served if the North Central LRT was more centrally located. This would provide more options for TOD than the Nose Creek Valley alignment. 


Nose Creek, Edmonton Trail, Centre Street N. alignment engagement  (May)

Around 2,150 Calgarians attended open houses. They explored the concept of an LRT line along Nose Creek, Edmonton Trail or Centre Street N. A new planning study determined a route based on a Centre Street N. or Edmonton Trail alignment.