Calgary to offer 10 weeks of public feedback on design of $550M arena

Published Friday, September 6, 2019 2:00 pm

     The city-owned Calgary Municipal Land Corporation will oversee both the construction of the new arena as well as the public engagement plan.

CEO Michael Brown says they'll be asking Calgarians in person and online what they want from the facility and the broader entertainment district that the corporation envisages for the area.

"Our focus is the experience," Brown said. "How are you going to experience the arena/event centre? How are you going to experience the public space? .... When you're coming down here, what do you want to do?"

     City council was criticized — even by some of its own members — for the lack of time Calgarians were provided to weigh in on the arena deal before it was approved earlier this summer.

Citizens had one week from when the deal was publicly announced to when council voted 11-4 in favour of moving ahead on the agreement with the Calgary Flames ownership group and the Calgary Stampede.

During that time, more than 5,200 residents submitted their views.

     Coun. Jeff Davison, who chairs the city's event centre assessment committee, said Thursday there will be plenty of opportunity in the future for citizens to speak up about what they want from the facility, now that it's been approved.

"Those who feel like they didn't have a say will have that say in terms of what this will look like and what this will do as a civic facility," he said.

The public engagement is set to run for 10 weeks, starting in early 2020.