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Arts & Culture plan and budget


Arts & Culture leads and invests in the development of vibrant and creative communities. We are champions of a revitalized downtown, encouraging economic development and diversification. Through investment in creative industries, we position Calgary as a global city. We provide equitable arts and culture access to Calgarians, visitors and the artists who create the work. We support the production and delivery of festivals and events; provide grants to local artists and organizations; commission, acquire and maintain public art with Calgary Arts Development; plan publicly accessible art and cultural spaces; and support visual, cultural and performing arts programming.

Our customers

  • residents
  • tourists
  • festival attendees, organizers and industry
  • community and cultural groups
  • arts organizations
  • cultural development fund recipients
  • sector and industry customers (film)

Our partners

  • Festival and event organizers
  • Civic partners
  • Short-term project partners
  • Community contributors
  • Business Improvement Areas
  • Grant recipients
  • Other City of Calgary business units

Value to Calgarians

  • draws talent, tourism and diverse industries to our city
  • festivals, events, visual arts and cultural experiences
  • individuals and communities can express themselves through artistic creation and representation

What we deliver

  • Development of the arts and culture sector through strategy creation, and program development and implementation.
  • Funding and guidance to organizations for programs, initiatives and infrastructure.
  • Produce and support festivals and events.
  • Offer visual and performing arts programming.

Budget breakdown

service plan budget


Operating ($millions)
Capital ($millions)
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Service line Breakdown
Arts & Culture

Get a complete breakdown of how your property tax dollars are used.

Measuring performance

We are measuring our performance in five areas. Each value is the goal we expect to reach by 2026. 

Public Art projects run by CADA

Amount of funding per attendee

# of community organizations receiving arts & culture microgrants

Calgarians satisfaction with Arts & Culture

View our yearly performance progress.

What we've heard

The 2022 Spring Pulse Survey indicates Arts & Culture, including festivals, are important to Calgarians. Eight in ten (81 per cent) say that support for arts and culture is important, and 81 per cent are satisfied with arts and culture support. Three-quarters (76 per cent) of Calgarians note enjoying arts and culture is a main reason to visit the downtown. Most Calgarians (63 per cent) think a strong arts and culture sector is key to creating a vibrant city, and 58 per cent believe public art helps create a sense of belonging. The arts are becoming more accessible, but there is room for improvement; 56 per cent of Calgarians rate the availability of arts programs and events as good or excellent, up from 50 per cent in 2020.

Participate and view results of City research

What we're watching

  • Economic trends - Financial hardships and insolvencies, due to reduced revenues, create a long-term impairment in Calgary's cultural sector. Supporting economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic is needed to restore and grow participation and attendance at festivals, events, and arts and culture activities.
  • Global City - Calgary’s economy needs to diversify. To attract new business, new talent, and retain young people, Calgary must position itself as a desirable place to live and invest.
  • Equity and Truth and Reconciliation - There is a global cultural shift centering equity, diversity, and inclusion. Arts and culture is a conduit to reflect, respond and drive these changes.

Our initiatives

What we plan to do

We will focus on developing vibrant and creative communities, supporting a diverse, thriving economy and revitalizing downtown through investment in creative industries that will provide Calgarians with equitable access to arts and culture experiences.

How we're going to get there

  • Support year-round meaningful cultural experiences by progressing the promotion of the Winter City and Eventful City strategies.
  • Support our partners in the film and creative industries by progressing the film friendly strategy.
  • Support economic, social and cultural opportunities downtown through Arts & Culture initiatives by investing in partners.
  • Invest in Calgary’s cultural future through supporting Calgary and Chinatown Cultural Plans.
  • Increase equitable access to festivals and events by delivering low-cost and no-cost festivals, events, and programming directly and with our partners.

More initiatives

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