$900 Million Reasons

The City has submitted a $900 million flood repair list to the Alberta Government.

The list of projects has been submitted for provincial funding, but councillors are requesting city administrators categorize the list into musthaves and nice-to-haves.

Administrators will be returning with a list of items that are priority to be completed over this construction season and in a month another list detailing the high and low priority projects will be made.

The Alberta government has also received an advance payment of $500 million from the Government of Canada’s Department of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness under the disaster financial assistance to help with recovery and rebuilding efforts.

“The delivery of financial assistance from the federal government for the June floods is certainly good news,” said Ken Hughes, Municipal Affairs Minister. “Insurance claims included, this unprecedented disaster will cost approximately $6 billion to help restore affected areas of the province and reduce the chance of future devastation on this scale. Sharing these costs with our federal partners helps us to continue our flood recovery efforts, support impacted Albertans and make our province a safer place.”

In addition to the financial assistance from the federal government, the Alberta government allocated $1.1 billion from Budget 2014 for operational expenses and capital spending over the next three years to address flood recovery and mitigation initiatives. Out of that funding, $518 million has been earmarked to spend in 2014-2015.

With the $900 million list already submitted to the province, the city task force expects to find out in the fall what grants they will receive. The list ranges from replacing Elbow River pedestrian bridges, permanent flood berms, a Glenmore Reservoir diversion tunnel and new inner-city bridges.

Whatever projects the province doesn’t fund, the city will have to take on if they have the funds and deem it necessary.

One project, if not funded by the province, which may not be funded by the city is a $6 million request to pave all neighbourhood back lanes located in the flood zone.

An engineering firm has been hired to do a project feasibility study for the $300 million diversion tunnel between the Glenmore Reservoir and the Bow River, so in a couple of months the city will decide if the project should go ahead.

Also in the grant request was $25 million for a network of dikes and other flood guards to protect the Calgary Zoo. City council has promised the Calgary Zoo $1.2 million to start designing the dikes and other preventative projects.

The Alberta government will be providing eligible schools up to $2.5 million per school for flood mitigation measures that are not covered through insurance. Items could include landscaping and site remediation, relocation of susceptible equipment and installation of flood-proof doors and windows.

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