May 2024

City-Wide Blanket Upzoning of Residential Lots – Public Hearing April 22, 2024

The public hearing regarding upzoning all single and semi-detached residential lots in Calgary started on April 22, 2024 and has continued for 2 weeks.  The hearing is still on-going at the time of this writing.  The majority of speakers have been opposed to blanket upzoning.  By the time this article is published, a decision should have been rendered and reported in the media.

In addition to blanket upzoning, Council will be debating the approval of laneway or backyard suites as a permitted use in addition to a secondary suite.  These are usually suites built above a rear garage.  This would allow 3 dwelling units on each single family property and 6 dwelling units on each semi-detached property.  There would be no requirement for parking on-site.

For those of you who have been watching the news and are wondering about some of the planning terminology, here are some definitions:

Land Use District – specifies the type of development and land use that can occur in the district.  Each district has its own set of rules.  R = residential; C = commercial; I = industrial; MU = mixed use; S = special purpose; CC = centre city.

Development Permit – a document issued by the City authorizing a development which includes the plans and conditions of approval.

R-CG – Residential – Grade Oriented Infill District.

H-GO – Housing – Grade Oriented District.

Discretionary Use – the development permit for a discretionary use can be appealed to the Subdivision and Development Appeal Board (SDAB) on certain grounds.

Permitted Use – the development permit for a permitted use cannot be appealed

Lot Coverage – the amount of a parcel covered by the main building and garage.  This does not include eaves, sidewalks, driveways, decks, patios, pergolas, landings, & stairs.

Setback – the distance between the property line and the building.

Secondary Suite – a self-contained residence located within a main residence; this can be located on any floor within the home such as the basement, main floor, or upper floor.

Backyard Suite – a self-contained residence that is detached from the main residence; this includes garage suites, garden suites, or laneway homes.

A complete list of definitions can be found at

Ward Boundary Commission

The Ward Boundary Commission is inviting Calgarians to share their thoughts in a public engagement on what effective representation at the municipal level means to them. This public engagement is part of a larger review directed by Calgary City Council in June 2023.

The engagement focuses specifically on the activities performed by Councillors (e.g. legislative duties, resolving local issues, communicating with constituents, advocating to other orders of government), as well as the systems Calgarians use to communicate with their Councillors (e.g. 311, email, social media, public hearings, meetings and events).

Visit to fill out the questionnaire, find pop-up event details and learn more about the project.

South Shaganappi Local Area Plan

The Local Area Plan engagement process is well underway.  The City will be hosting an open house in May or June and will distribute an information booklet prior to that.  More information can be found on the City’s website at

University Innovation Quarter (formerly University Research Park)

The University Innovation Quarter is a 76 acre site north of 32 Avenue, south of Crowchild Trail, and east of 37 Street.  Planning for redevelopment of this site is underway and public engagement sessions will be held in the next few months.  Go to for more information and sign up for their updates

Playground Review Subcommittee

This project will resume in May 2024.  If you have any concerns about safety of playground equipment, contact the City directly through 311.  They are committed to providing repairs as quickly as possible.

For information regarding the Civic Affairs Committee, please contact JoAnne Atkins, Director of Civic Affairs, at