Calgary may reallocate $15.5 million to downtown projects that are ready to go, as council received an update on the downtown strategy on Tuesday.
Members on the city’s Priorities and Finance committee voted 7-1 in favour of reallocating $15.5 million in cultural municipal sustainability cash to two projects: The Glenbow Museum and the Fort Calgary expansion.
Lori Kerr, manager of partnerships with the City of Calgary, said that based on feedback from partners, these two projects were selected.
“These two projects are recommended, as they have a high level of project readiness and align and support the objectives of the Calgary greater downtown plan, the cultural plan for Calgary Tourism Calgary’s destination strategy, and the CMLC Rivers District master plan,” she said.
The matter still needs full council approval. If approved, Fort Calgary would get $4.5 million and the Glenbow Museum would receive $11 million. That latter amount would add to the $40 million the province said they would kick in to the estimated $120 million reno of the museum space.
Four other projects won’t receive funding. This is either due to changing priorities, project timelines, or some of work isn’t needed, city administration said.
Downtown conversion plans move ahead
Committee members also heard updates on the downtown office conversion plan. They will be taking project applications from Aug. 16 to Sept. 15. From there, applications will be reviewed and selected to receive part of the city incentive program.
There’s up to $10 million available through the recently approved Greater Downtown Strategy.
In moving the approval, Coun. Druh Farrell said the city’s come to terms with the need to intervene to boost the downtown. She compared it to the East Village and the public dollars put in to stimulate development.
“I see the downtown as being no different,” she said.
“I’m really looking forward to, as a citizen, watching the success of this program.”