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City-Wide Growth Strategy

Our City-wide growth strategy work focuses on how to enable growth and development and retain investment and jobs in Calgary, while achieving the policy objectives in the Municipal Development Plan/Calgary Transportation Plan (MDP/CTP) and maintaining a balanced market. In 2018, an evaluation process centered on three primary guiding factors was developed to help make a growth recommendations to City Council. All three are important for facilitating a sustainable growth decision making process and include:

  • Municipal Development Plan/Calgary Transportation Plan alignment
  • Market forces
  • Financial impacts

This process provides the necessary information and analysis required to set an investment program that will support future development. A city-wide growth strategy also provides a clear process to determine when and where the city should grow, allowing greater certainty for private investment decisions.

The city-wide growth strategy consists of three components, the Established Area Growth and Change Strategy​, Industrial Growth Strategy and New Community Growth Strategy. These three components were first identified through the Industry City Work Plan that arose as part of the 2016 Off-site Levy Byl​aw. More information on these strategies are provided below, along with links to the last four annual update reports.

The focus of City-Wide Growth Strategy work in 2020 is:

  • Bring forward Phase 1 recommendations for the Established Area Growth and Change Strategy, and continuation of work in Phase 2.
  • Prepare a scoping report for the Industrial Growth Strategy (Industrial Strategy).
  • Prepare New Community Growth Strategy business case recommendations and potential future policy and financial improvements.

Focusing on these objectives helps strengthen investment and business opportunities within the city while maintaining a strong commitment to the main factors used in growth decision making.

Established Area Growth and Change Strategy

Since 2016, The City has been working to reduce barriers to redevelopment by addressing the costs of redevelopment, utility infrastructure capacity, financial tools, policy alignment and application processes. A scoping report to formally initiate the Established Areas Growth and Change Strategy​ was approved by Council in 2018 September, an update report was delivered in May 2019, and the Phase 1 report with recommendations was delivered to Priorities and Finance Committee on April 29, 2020. A link to the reports are included below. This strategy is meant to support growth and change in existing communities in Calgary. Through this strategy, The City can better coordinate public investment while supporting existing communities through their lifecycle growth and change, linking existing policy and current policy efforts and support developers in helping build the city that is envisioned in the MDP/CTP.

​Key dates ​Stage
Key dates: ​2020 April/May Stage: ​Report to Committee​/Council: Recommend strategic actions for the Established Area​ that meaningfully supports community growth, change, and quality of life.

Lesley Kalmakoff​
Senior Growth Management Planner

Industrial Growth Strategy


The Industrial Growth Strategy has a short-term and long-term view to support economic diversification and identify strategies that continue to support industrial development in Calgary. This will be done by developing strategies that support the industrial sector’s prosperity and strengthen Calgary’s position as an inland port. The focus of work in 2020 will be to deliver a scoping report in Q4, an update on industrial land supply and development activities, and link to other corporate priorities benefitting or impacting the Industrial sector. Industrial Strategy will form part of the comprehensive city wide growth strategy and will also link with city-wide policy planning, the Off-Site Levy Bylaw Review, funding and financing tools that arise as part of the Established Area Growth and Change Strategy (EAGCS) work program, and New Community Growth Strategy and other city wide initiatives.

Abdul Jaffari
Senior Growth Management Planner​

New Community Growth Strategy 2020

The New Community Growth Strategy seeks to enable strategic growth in new community areas by aligning planning policy, market demand, infrastructure and servicing needs, and City budgets. In 2018, a framework for strategic growth decision making was built, with recommendations brought forward to Council. The result was an approved portfolio of investments for 14 new communities and 27 actively developing communities for inclusion in the One Calgary (2019-2022) service plan and budget. This represents an approximate $537 million investment in 2019-2022.

As outlined in the 2018 March Council report PFC2018-0200, funding considerations for new community business cases will be considered on a two year cycle in alignment with the beginning and mid-cycle of the four year budget timeframe. Establishing a two year evaluation cycle provides certainty in process, with enough flexibility to meet market demand while allowing The City to consider financial impacts at budget time.

New Community Growth Strategy 2020 Evaluation Details (Updated 2019 December 12)

Council provided clarity on the process for the New Community Growth Strategy 2020 through the 2019 Growth Monitoring Report PFC2019-1062 (Item 7.12) in 2019 November.

Through this report, Council approved a modification to the established process of regularly receiving business cases for new communities that recognizes The City of Calgary's current economic constraints.

As part of the modified process, proponents must first submit proposals that demonstrate how their business case area will meet the following criteria:

  1. No required capital costs from The City of Calgary to initiate development;
  2. No required operating costs in the current One Calgary (2019-2022) budget or the next (2023-2026) budget cycle, without a proposed mitigating solution, that does not include tax and utility rate increases using the existing model and any improvements made by the date of review;
  3. Completing areas of previously approved communities and leveraging capital investments already made in 2018 and prior years;
  4. Property tax generation potential; and
  5. Levy generation potential that funds new and established areas.

Below is a schedule of key dates for the 2020 evaluation cycle (subject to change).

K​​e​​y D​ates Description
Key Dates: 2019 December 2 Description: ​Administration releases proposal direction to proponents 
Key Dates: 2019 December 12 Description: ​Administration releases amended proposal direction and template to proponents after receiving stakeholder feedback NCGS 2020:
- NCGS Template
- Business case financial review
Key Dates: ​2019 December 31 Description: ​Deadline for proponents to submit proposals responding to criteria (anticipated to be changed to 2020 January 6 at the December 16 Council meeting)
Key Dates: ​2020 January 31 Description: ​ Administration to respond to all proponents indicating which proponents will be able to submit a full business case
Key Dates: ​2020 March 13 Description: ​Full submission deadline for invited business cases
Key Dates: ​2020 May 29 Description: ​Administration completes review of full business cases
Key Dates: ​2020 June-July Description: ​Administration and proponents review findings, opportunity for information clarification and adjustments
Key Dates: ​2020 October 13 Description: ​Administration brings forward business case recommendations to Priorities and Finance Committee
Key Dates: ​2020 October-November Description: ​Final decisions expected from Council​

Shawn Small
Senior Growth Management Planner