City Cemeteries plan and budget
The City has two active operating cemeteries that offer a wide range of interment products and services: Prairie Sky Cemetery and Queen's Park (although the land supply for casket interments at Queen's Park will likely end in 2023). The City also has a new regional park and cemetery being planned (in central north Calgary) and four historic cemeteries (Union, Burnsland, Chinese and St. Mary's). The Government of Alberta's Cemetery Act states that only municipalities and faith-based organizations can provide new cemeteries. There is a provincial obligation to maintain cemetery sites in perpetuity.
- Families and individuals purchasing interment space and related products.
- Genealogical and historical interest groups.
- Passive recreation groups (walking, wildlife viewing etc.)
- Attendees to hosted cultural, religious and holiday events.
- Funeral home service providers.
- Memorialisation providers.
- Related cemetery product suppliers.
Value to Calgarians
- a diverse selection of affordable, quality cemetery services and products
- products that meet the diverse cultural, religious and non-sectarian needs
- interment options as well as memorialisation products and services at affordable, value-based costs
- provide more than 160 hectares of public green spaces and historically and culturally significant landscapes
What we deliver
- Interment services and products.
- Maintenance and perpetual care programs.
- Cemetery customer service and sales.
- Excavating and repairing graves.
- Site and turf maintenance.
- Liaising with funeral service providers.
2023-2026 budget ($millions)
Expected 2026 performance.
# of total interments
2021 was 1,553
Cemetery interment revenue
2021 was $1.5K
Perpetual Care Fund total
2021 was $24.9K
# of eco-friendly interments
2021 was 4
# of income-assisted interments
2021 was 74
What we've heard
Citizen satisfaction is high for Calgary's municipal cemeteries with 93 per cent of Calgarians approving.
Serving a diverse demographic of cultural, religious, and non-religious communities, high satisfaction was reported (90 per cent or higher) in all equity categories, including: gender, visible minorities, ages, immigrants and those with disability status or family member with disability. For citizens' value dimensions, "Sustainability" was ranked first, followed by "Quality”, "Availability" and "Legislative Compliance".
Ongoing tracking of 3-1-1 and in-house cemetery feedback forms also provide City Cemeteries with insights on customer concerns, preferences and service requests.Participate and view results of City research
What we're watching
- Trends include more City Cemetery customers purchasing lower-priced, value-based products and services.
- Traditional cultural burial practices are increasing along with immigration. Second- or third-generation Canadians are increasingly moving towards cremation options.
- The pandemic in 2020-21, caused greater demands for cemetery services (whenever gathering restrictions were lifted).
- Industry trends include pro-active initiatives such as eco-friendly green burial options to lessen the environmental footprint of traditional interments.
- The activation of cemeteries as public green space will also continue as cemeteries host diverse community activities.
- There is a short-term risk that revenues may decline with a transition to the south Prairie Sky Cemetery as this new cemetery builds customer awareness and clientele.
- Other risks include no long-term water source at the new cemetery, severe weather impacting maintenance and unfunded capital for a new north regional park and cemetery.
What we plan to do
City Cemeteries will transition operations to Prairie Sky Cemetery as the land supply for casket burials at Queen’s Park Cemetery ends in 2023. To support Calgarians requiring this service, a new building to serve as a gathering space for the community and conduct administrative business is needed.
How we're going to get there
- Complete Phase One of development at Prairie Sky Cemetery by 2026 to continue providing this provincially legislated service for the coming decades of Calgarians.
- Meet Calgarian’s needs and expectations for cemetery services by designing and constructing a customer service and administrative building at Prairie Sky Cemetery by 2024 (the service is currently working out of the nearby Ralph Klein Park building).
- Manage Calgarians' expectations by implementing a closing strategy for Queen’s Park Cemetery once casket interment space land supply ends in 2023.
- Provide a diverse range of affordable and value-based cemetery products and service options by conducting an annual cemeteries price benchmark analysis.
- Connect with Calgarians by re-establishing interactive community events (i.e., Mother’s and Father’s Day flowers, historic cemetery tours, etc.) and exploring new opportunities.