🥳Council votes to ensure new sprawl pays for itself

Last Tuesday, January 16th Calgary City Council voted 10-5 to approve increased off-site levies that will help ensure developers pay their fair share of new infrastructure for new communities.

City Council 10-5 vote approving new off-site levies for developers. (Source: City of Calgary)


🙏Thank you to Mayor Gondek and the following City Councillors for acting in the best interest of residents living in existing communities!

✅ Mayor - Jyoti Gondek

✅ Ward 3 - Jasmine Mian

✅ Ward 5 - Raj Dhaliwal

✅ Ward 6 - Richard Pootmans

✅ Ward 7 - Terry Wong

✅ Ward 8 - Courtney Walcott

✅ Ward 9 - Gian-Carlo Carra

✅ Ward 11 - Kourtney Penner

✅ Ward 12 - Evan Spencer

✅ Ward 14 - Peter Demong


💸5 councillors voted to maximize the profits of suburban developers on the backs of taxpayers

Despite the clear case for requiring developers to pay their fair share of new infrastructure, five city councillors shockingly voted to prioritize the profits of suburban developers over affordability for Calgarians living in existing communities.

❌ Ward 1 - Sonya Sharp

❌ Ward 2 - Jennifer Wyness

❌ Ward 4 - Sean Chu 

❌ Ward 10 - Andrew Chabot

❌ Ward 13 - Dan McLean


For decades, suburban sprawl has been shouldered by taxpayers in existing communities.

In 2019, it was reported that the 14 new communities approved by the previous Council in 2018 contributed to a $56.9-million shortfall across utilities, transportation and community services.


⛳️Integrity Commissioner finds Dan McLean in breach of Code of Conduct for golfing with suburban developers during Council meeting

Image of Councillor Dan McLean's Microsoft Teams video feed while skipping a public Council meeting to golf with suburban developers on July 26th, 2023. (Source: Jeremy Appel)

Last month, the City's Integrity Commissioner found Councillor Dan McLean in violation of sections 9, 10, and 11, and in breach of sections 16 and 18 of the Code of Conduct for Elected Officials for attending and participating in the Shane Homes Golf Tournament during a public meeting of City Council.

On the day of the off-site levy vote, Councillor McLean could be found grandstanding in the media over the "unaffordability" of 15-cent paper bags while he quietly voted against measures to protect Calgarians from shouldering $10's of millions of dollars in infrastructure costs for new communities. 


How off-site levies help ensure sprawl pays for itself

Image source: City of Calgary

Off-site levies fund the infrastructure that we use every day in new communities. In Calgary, an off-site levy is a development charge paid by developers. The greenfield is the area on the edges of Calgary that are not developed yet.

New communities have impacts on infrastructure outside of the community. This can include more pressure on major roads or the sewage treatment system. Developers pay off-site levies to help share the costs of the off-site impacts from growth.

Calgary’s off-site levies help pay for infrastructure that supports growth and development. The Municipal Government Act and the Off-site Levies Bylaw outline what infrastructure the levy pays for. Some examples of the types of infrastructure are:

  • water and wastewater pipes
  • transportation (roads, interchanges, pathways, bikeways, etc.)
  • stormwater pipes
  • emergency response stations
  • transit buses
  • police stations
  • recreation centres
  • libraries
  • water and wastewater 


Further reading

🤓 Read more about the changes to the off-site levies

🤓 City of Calgary: Off-site Levies Presentation (Oct 23, 2023)