Advocacy Positions

Kensington Calgary
Kensington Calgary

Advocacy Positions

As the primary advocate for Calgary’s tourism industry, Tourism Calgary evaluates opportunities that relate to the visitor economy through the lens of what’s needed to make Calgary the ultimate host city. Guided by Calgary’s Destination Strategy, Tourism Calgary may advocate for initiatives, infrastructure, processes, events, festivals and experiences that:

  • Elevate Calgary’s reputation as the ultimate host city;
  • Enhance Calgary’s hosting infrastructure;
  • Lead to the attraction or development of events throughout the year;
  • Attract or enhance premier cultural experiences;
  • Support Calgary’s existing anchor experiences; and/or
  • Enhance the emotional connection to Calgary’s brand.

To achieve success as defined by its stakeholder community and ensure that Calgary continues to evolve as a great place to live – and to visit – Tourism Calgary has taken the following advocacy positions:

Supress from menu
No

Current Positions

Event Centre

Over the past three years, Tourism Calgary has undertaken extensive stakeholder engagement on Calgary’s development needs as part of Ultimate Hosts. Ultimate Host City. Calgary’s stakeholder-led and endorsed Destination Strategy. The overwhelming sentiment of stakeholders is that a is critical for the revitalization of Calgary’s Culture and Entertainment District. With this important development comes public, social and economic benefits for Calgarians through investment, vibrancy, increased tourism and visitor spending.

Tourism Calgary and the majority of its stakeholders agree that an important aspect of all great cities, particularly those committed to offering cultural and sport experiences, events, festivals and performances for residents and visitors, is effective hosting infrastructure. As the ultimate host city, the benefits of new sport and entertainment hosting infrastructure – designed to meet current and future needs – is clearly reflected in our local, national and international brand, our economy, the core of our city and our quality of life aspirations of being a vibrant and active city. For the benefit of visitors to our city, Tourism Calgary supports the proposed deal to develop a new event centre.

Supress from menu
No
East Village Calgary

East Village

Central Library

Central Library

Rivers District Master Plan

Designed to be flexible enough to imagine and integrate modernized amenities like a new event centre, the expanded BMO Centre and the delivery of a Stampede Trail retail destination, the plan and community will accommodate and support a variety of cultural and entertainment amenities. Not only will this revitalization project support a vibrant, walkable, central hub for gatherings, festivals and performances, it will play a vital role in fostering Calgary’s culture scene.

Supress from menu
No

Cultural development of Chinatown

Chinatown has served as an iconic experience and integral part of Calgary’s downtown core for over 100 years. The district’s existing Area Redevelopment Plan is over 30 years old and no longer aligns with the Municipal Development Plan or other significant city policies and objectives.

Chinatown is not only an iconic neighbourhood, it is a social and historically-significant hub that helps shape Calgary’s cultural fabric and make our city a vibrant, exciting and active place to live, work and visit. To grow Chinatown’s importance and contributions to the community and economy, the district must continue to be energized.

Supress from menu
No
Chinatown Street Festival

Chinatown Street Festival

Chinatown Street Festival

Chinatown Street Festival

Past Positions and Results

BMO Convention and Trade Centre Expansion

With focused investment on creating purposeful facilities and districts for entertainment, hosting and gathering, including the Rivers District and there within expanded convention and trade facilities at the BMO Centre to achieve Canadian Tier One status, generations of Calgarians and visitors will benefit.

The investment in enhanced trade and convention hosting infrastructure furthers our city’s ability to enhance our existing offerings, while attracting new visitors throughout the year. Through the attraction of a higher tier of conferences and trade shows, Calgary – and Calgarians – will benefit from new and repeat visitation, increased visitor spending and broader awareness of our key industries. The infrastructure will move us toward our vision of becoming the ultimate host city, and will boost Calgary’s economy, thereby increasing quality of life for Calgarians and our city’s international brand.

Results: Funded through $166.6-million in contributions from both the provincial government and the City of Calgary, in addition to $3.9 million from the Calgary Stampede, the BMO Convention and Trade Centre will be just under one million square feet when completed. Scheduled for completion in the summer of 2024, this new infrastructure will make Calgary the largest Tier 1 convention city in western Canada, providing the opportunity to host large national and international events. Not only will the BMO Centre expansion enhance economic diversity, trade and tourism and create jobs for Calgarians, it will serve as a catalyst for the emerging Cultural and Entertainment District.

Supress from menu
No

Creative Calgary

A strong arts and culture scene is vital to a city’s energy and draw – for visitors and Calgarians alike. Calgary-focused brand research commissioned by Tourism Calgary makes it clear that our city is perceived by Calgarians and visitors to lack vibrancy; an important antidote to that perception is a sustainable, active and adequately resourced arts and culture centre.

Calgary’s arts grants per capita are less than Edmonton, Montreal, Toronto, Winnipeg and Vancouver. This translates to fewer arts sector jobs for Calgarians. Over 50,000 Calgarians are employed in creative industries, and Calgary’s post-secondary schools produce over 4,000 graduates annually with creative-industry degrees or diplomas.

Increased, and sustainable investment in Calgary’s arts and culture sector will help to keep our graduates in Calgary. It will contribute to the quality of life of Calgarians and to our city’s unique DNA. It will help to advance our diverse cultural offerings, and contribute to true vibrancy in the Core. It will also help move us toward our vision of becoming the ultimate host city, will boost Calgary’s economy, and contribute meaningfully to our city’s brand and reputation as an active and accessible cultural destination.

Results: In late November of 2018, City Council approved a transformational increase to Calgary Arts Development’s budget, which will help build a more sustainable, resilient arts sector and contribute to a more vibrant, connected and prosperous city for all Calgarians.

Supress from menu
No

Potential 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games bid

The potential of bidding for and hosting the 2026 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games presented an important opportunity to grow global awareness of Calgary as a city and a tourism destination, enhance hosting infrastructure and further develop the core of the city. Recognizing the importance of this opportunity, Tourism Calgary partners and stakeholders gave the organization a clear mandate to support and provide information about Calgary’s potential bid for the 2026 Olympic & Paralympic Winter Games.

Results: Following a three-month campaign funded by the Calgary Hotel Association, Tourism Calgary determined that 85 per cent of Calgarians believe tourism is an important contributor to Calgary’s economy and quality of life.

Supress from menu
No