Calgary Minute: Stolen Plaques, Churchill Statue, and Rising Gun Violence
Calgary Minute - Your weekly one-minute summary of Calgary politics
This Week In Calgary:
Council is in recess for the month of August but there will be a meeting of the Calgary Planning Commission on Thursday at 1:00 pm. Several land use amendments are on the agenda.
The City of Calgary is refreshing RouteAhead, the 30-year plan that provides direction for planning and investing in Transit in Calgary. Until September 23rd, Calgarians are being asked to provide feedback on what Calgary Transit is doing well and what can be done to improve the customer experience. We have a strong hunch that no one will say we should continue with the karaoke bus.
- The reimagining of Stephen Avenue is in the “Activate and Experiment” phase, and the City is looking for feedback on a variety of different ideas being tested. Currently, the projects in need of input are some green space on the corner of 1 Street SW, some seating on the corner of Centre Street, and an art project. Residents are invited to provide their feedback on these elements online.
Last Week In Calgary:
The Province announced plans to erect a statue of Winston Churchill on the south lawn of the McDougall Centre in the spring. Premier Jason Kenney noted that Churchill was “one of the greatest champions of parliamentary democracy” and had a particular affinity for Alberta that was developed through a 1929 visit to the province. The Sir Winston Churchill Society of Calgary says Calgary is one of the few large Canadian cities without a statute of the former UK Prime Minister. The project has drawn criticism, as most statue projects do these days, but all of the money for the creation and maintenance of the statue was raised privately.
Calgary Police Chief Mark Neufeld said the city is entering unprecedented territory with the number of shootings that have taken place. So far, there have been 97 shootings in 2022, with the highest number for any full year being 112 in 2020. A recent investigation uncovered and shut down a 3D printed firearms trafficking operation in the city, but Neufeld suggested that only 25% of shootings have been related to organized crime. The Alberta government says it will provide a total of $5.2 million to eligible groups over the next two years to support crime prevention and safety programs.
- Hundreds of memorial plaques were stolen from the Queen’s Park Cemetery in the City’s northwest quadrant. More than 300 bronze plaques were removed, and police suspect the crime is due to the metal’s value. While other bronze monuments in the city have been stolen, only one cemetery has been targeted.
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