CALGARY (660 NEWS) – City council has approved a list of projects that will see a boost of $152 million from the provincial government.
The United Conservatives announced back in July that $500 million would be committed to municipal infrastructure projects in the province, with Calgary receiving about a third of that total.
Council approved an application to boost funding towards projects like the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, roadways, and affordable housing, something Mayor Naheed Nenshi said is desperately needed.
“It bothers me a lot that we’re the largest tenant-landlord in Calgary and sometimes our tenants don’t live in places we should be proud of being a landlord of,” said Nenshi. “I hope we’ll be able to fix a lot of that.”
The city is looking to commit just over $9 million toward that initiative.
Originally, the city was looking at using $5.5 million to buy hotels and refurbish them for affordable housing but that doesn’t fall under the province’s guidelines.
Nenshi said this is because buying a building doesn’t directly create jobs, which is the intention of the municipal stimulus program. However, he said the conversation is ongoing.
“The issue on distressed hotel assets in particular or distressed residential assets, it’s not dead.”
City Administration will submit its applications to the Government of Alberta no later than Oct.1.