Now that the southwest ring road is a go, the long-awaited community of Providence south of Tsuu T’ina Nation is finally beginning to take shape.
In May, the federal government approved a land-swap deal with the nation that transferred land designated for the roadway to the province.
And in July, both Tsuu T’ina and the Alberta government vowed to have the throughway completed within the next seven years.
All this means City of Calgary officials have had to dust off the area structure plan (ASP) for the adjacent land.
Where is Providence?
The future community is located on about 800 hectares of land in the city’s southwest quadrant, west of the communities of Evergreen and Bridlewood. It is bound by the southwest ring road to the east, Tsuu T’ina Nation to the north, a future planning area to the west and Highway 22X to the south.
A decade in the making
The Providence ASP was actually first initiated more than a decade ago. The City annexed the land in 1989, but abandoned the planning process in 2007 due to uncertainty about the future of the southwest ring road. The freeway is considered a linchpin in the area’s development in that it would alleviate traffic congestions on roads such as Macleod Trail S. and 14th Street S.W.
What will it look like?
Main access to the community would be via 146th Avenue S.E., as well as 162nd Avenue S.E., which would include dedicated bus lanes that connect to the Somerset-Bridlewood LRT station. Providence is expected to include a new regional athletic park that will add playing fields, track-and-field facilities, field house and indoor soccer centre, as well as nine schools.
A ‘complete community’
The City is envisioning Providence as a community where residents can “work, live and play.” Jill Sonego, a city planner and team lead for the Providence ASP, anticipates Providence will house up to 32,000 future residents and provide jobs for an estimated 11,000 workers in office, retail, institutional and industrial sectors.
The next steps
The City says a proposed ASP will be ready for council to review by December 2015. Over the summer, City staff will be consulting with stakeholders to update a land-use concept, draft policies and create maps. In September, the draft ASP will be presented to the public for feedback. A finalized ASP will go to the Calgary Planning Commission in October prior to council’s review.