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Eau Claire Plaza Redesign

Eau Claire Plaza Redesign

Construction Update – October 2021

$8.6 million from the Government of Alberta’s Municipal Stimulus Program has been allocated to redesign and construct Eau Claire Plaza. The project work on the Plaza is now underway, and preliminary building assessments and inspections are complete. We’ve installed fencing for tree protection to ensure the preservation of existing large trees on site. Site demolition is complete, with earthworks underway. The public restrooms have been demolished however local facilities are open in the Eau Claire Market and on Prince’s Island. Temporary restrooms have also been opened in Sien Lok Park. 

Construction detours have been set up and are subject to change during construction. Please be sure to slow down in construction zones and look out for workers and pedestrians in the area. 

The next step for the project will be to move the Eau Claire Lumber Company building to a temporary location on October 14.The building needs to be moved so that we can raise the elevation of the entire area to meet flood resiliency targets (1:100 elevation) and to install new underground utilities to service future events and functions in the Plaza.

For ongoing construction updates, please visit Eau Claire Area Improvements construction and detours

The Eau Claire Plaza is being redesigned as part of the refresh of the Eau Claire area to allow for more flexible year around uses and improved accessibility for all residents and visitors. Its new design will embrace everyday community gatherings in addition to spaces for hosting larger events and festivals.

The design will be well integrated with the adjacent market redevelopment, Downtown Flood Barrier, Eau Claire Promenade, and Jaipur Bridge replacement. As a place grounded in history, this space will be reimagined into a vibrant world class attraction for social and cultural gatherings.

Once fully completed, the plaza will become an iconic gateway to the area and a vibrant destination that compliments the improvements occurring around it. This project is being launched and coordinated with the overarching Eau Claire Area Improvements.

Eau Claire Plaza Vision

Eau Claire Plaza is an iconic public space that connects the vibrant mixed-use Eau Claire community, Eau Claire Promenade, and Prince's Island. This is a place for neighbours, Calgarians, and visitors alike.

This design is grounded in history, with adaptable and engaging spaces that support social and cultural gatherings at all scales, throughout the year.

Plaza Character Areas

Urban Plaza - Stage for the city
The Urban Plaza is the formal gathering space of Eau Claire Plaza, that is designed to be flexible and adaptable.

Central Green - Flexible and dynamic
The Central Green is a large open lawn anchored by an overhead canopy, which provides sheltered gathering space.

Riverside Terraces - Playful transition
The Riverside Terraces extend the plaza to the Eau Claire Promenade, integrating the plaza with the Bow River and Prince's Island.

Market Street - Connection to the past
The Market Street is a multi-purpose "street" that is designed as a flexible space to integrate the plaza with Eau Claire Market.

Promenade - Connective thread
A multi-use pathway runs the length of the plaza on the west side. This area is focused on providing a north-south connection through the site.

Play - Play for all ages
This space connects the plaza with the YMCA and serves as its front porch. Activated with urban and nature-inspired elements that encourage play and exploration for all ages, it supports exterior programming opportunities for the YMCA.

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Budget

$25 million

Timeline

  • Spring 2021- Fall 2023

Past events

April 13, 2019

October 5, 2019

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Frequently asked questions

Why is Eau Claire Plaza being redesigned?

The Eau Claire Plaza is being redesigned as part of the refresh of the Eau Claire area to allow for more flexible year around uses and improved accessibility for all residents and visitors. Its new design will embrace everyday community gatherings in addition to spaces for hosting larger events and festivals.  Once fully completed, the plaza will become an iconic gateway to the area and a vibrant destination that compliments the newly constructed Eau Claire Promenade and Jaipur Bridge.

The Plaza is also being reconstructed to align with flood protection work happening in Eau Claire – the Eau Claire Promenade/Downtown Flood Barrier. The Plaza needs to be re-graded as part of The City’s Flood Resilience Plan in order to protect Eau Claire and Calgary’s downtown from future flooding. The City’s Flood Resilience Plan manages flood risk in Calgary.

The creation of the Downtown Flood Barrier and re-grading the Plaza will make downtown resilient to at least a future 2013-level flood and significantly reduce the flood risk to Calgary’s economic, social and cultural centre.

What will happen to the Eau Claire and Bow River Lumber Co. building?

In order for flood protection grading to occur, the Eau Claire and Bow River Lumber Co. building must be moved from its current location to a new location at the northeast corner of Eau Claire Plaza. Moving the building to a new location during construction and as part of a new design for the Plaza ensures that it is protected and maintained as a historical resource into the future.

The City is committed to ensuring that the building and its historic value will be protected during its move and Plaza construction. The City is also committed to elevating the building’s prominence and historical ties to the area as part of a newly designed Eau Claire Plaza.

The move strengthens the building’s heritage factor as it moves it closer to the central operational area of the Eau Claire and Bow River Lumber Co. The building’s potential permanent location increases its visibility and presence in the area, while also increasing its historical prominence at a location closer to Prince’s Island and the Eau Claire and Bow River Lumber Co.’s saw mill log delivery river channel.

The City believes that the building’s current location is not a character-defining element and that its current location limits the building’s prominence and accessibility to visitors to Eau Claire. Moving the building to the interface of the Plaza and the Eau Claire Promenade will tie the building’s heritage more tightly to Eau Claire’s history, while making it more prominent and accessible to visitors.

What can be expected during construction?

At The City of Calgary, we pride ourselves on building a great place to live and a great place to make a life. We know that construction can be disruptive and can feel counter to those goals. Our project managers and contractors have extensive experience in this area. They use lessons learned from previous projects to find new, alternative, and better ways to mitigate the direct impact on Calgarians.

The safety and wellbeing of staff, contractors and the community is an utmost priority for The City.

As a community, we continue to work through the impacts of COVID19. We will continue to monitor and adjust to ensure the safety of those working on the Eau Claire Area Improvement projects.

Enabling works for the project has started, and construction is set to start in spring 2021. It is important you know what to expect. We are committed to keeping business access open throughout construction.

When construction is underway, here’s what you can expect:

  • An increase in on-site construction activity, including construction crews, vehicles and heavy equipment.
  • Pathway and sidewalk closures and detours along the Bow River Pathway Network and surrounding areas ensure pedestrians and cyclists can travel safely through the area and still access their destinations.
  • The temporary removal of some parking, road closures and potential road detours.
  • Fencing around construction areas and on-site signage.
  • An increase in noise and vibrations throughout construction. For example, demolition, pile driving, motorized equipment, ground compaction and vehicle back-up alarms.
  • Installation of steel sheet piles that will generate ground vibrations in localized areas.
  • Soil disturbance and dust emissions.
  • An increase in truck and equipment traffic accessing the construction site(s) and surrounding areas.
  • Material removal and delivery, as well as on-site flaggers to help direct traffic and pathway users.
  • Temporary utility shut-downs may be required.
  • Temporary transit stop relocations and detours.
  • Construction activity on weekends, weekdays, and overnight as required.

Will the construction impact access to businesses?

The City's project team will work directly with any affected business owner to minimize construction impact to their business operation prior to the start of the construction activities.​

Will construction impact connections between the Eau Claire Promenade/Bow River pathway system and neighbouring downtown communities?

To maintain safe access to the pathways and cycle network within the city, detours will connect people walking and wheeling along the Bow River Pathway from the West Eau Claire area to RiverWalk in Chinatown and East Village, and the downtown cycle track. To learn more about detours please visit Eau Claire Area Improvements construction and detours.

How do I report a safety concern during construction?

If the safety concern is a medical emergency, call 911. For all other questions or concerns, please call 311.​​


This information has no legal status and cannot be used as an official interpretation of the various bylaws, codes and regulations currently in effect. The City of Calgary accepts no responsibility to persons relying solely on this information. Web pages are updated periodically. ​

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