Saved by dry skies
We came close to losing the entire downtown in 2013. If the rain had continued to fall for even a few more hours, the Elbow River floodwater could have been two metres higher.
Floodwater only 8 feet higher would have put the
entire downtown core
Every parkade, elevator, and every store front business. And that nearly happened.
In 2013 we lost houses, critical infrastructure like LRT tracks, and sustained enormous damage to public places like the Zoo, the Saddledome and the Stampede grounds.
If it had rained a little longer, downtown could have been devastated. It would have been months, or years, before business could proceed. In that scenario, Calgary would lose – forever. It would be no longer a place to invest, a city ripe for head offices, or a city to live in.
We all feel the impact
It’s more than the cleanup. We’re all paying the price in lost business and taxes.
A flood damage assessment for the City of Calgary found there is $2 billion at risk should a 2013-level flood event take place again.
By the numbers
5 Lives Lost
natural disaster in Canadian history, after the Fort McMurray fires.
$6 Billion +
Cost of recovery in southern Alberta
in damage to public infrastructure in Calgary
Lost work hours, Calgary
Reduction in Canadian GDP
percentage of large business affected
of small business affected
damaged or destroyed
50 Bus Routes
cancelled or detoured
30 highways &
before City Hall was running – and restoration work continues to this day.
The current average annual cost of flooding in Calgary without mitigation: