Calgary faces $10M bill for storm cleanup
At least five families left homeless due to flooding
Calgary's mayor is asking the province for help repairing $10 million in damage from a storm that swept through the city Tuesday night, flooding streets and homes.
The city dealt with nine major road closures, nine fires, three collapsed structures and power outages to more than 1,000 homes during the storm, said Mayor Dave Bronconnier.
"We will be applying to the Province of Alberta, to the disaster relief fund, to address the municipal infrastructure that has been damaged as a result of this flood," he said Wednesday.
A lot of that money will be needed just to repair 14th Street NW. The roadway buckled when a wall of water underneath rushed down the hill because of a broken sewer pipe, he said.
Many cars and homes were flooded, leaving at least five families homeless.
Michael Louie, a disaster management co-ordinator for the Red Cross, said a bungalow one person was living in was condemned after flood waters washed away its foundation.
The other four families lived in basement suites where water poured in through windows and doors, he said.
Because the familiesdidn't havetenant insurance, the Red Cross is asking for donations through the Calgary Emergency Relief Fund at First Calgary Savings.
300 intersections flooded
Almost10 centimetres of rain fell on Calgary overnight Tuesday and into Wednesday, according to Environment Canada. Most of that,seven centimetres, fell Tuesday night.
The city's storm water system was overwhelmed, with 300 intersections flooding.
The Hong Kong Plaza's basement parkade flooded. Property manager Peter Chu said the city has to improve its sewer system.
"The sewer is not [big]enough for the rainwater to go through," he said.
Zennon Zalusky, the head of the city's water services department, said the system can handle heavy rains but when a huge amount of water falls in such a short time, it's not a surprise that drains are overwhelmed.
One of the worst flooded locations was on Glenmore Trail under Macleod Trail. Zalusky said the nearby construction on Glenmore at Fifth Street and Elbow Drive likely resulted in an even bigger pool of water than in the past.
"It's an area that's under construction right now. With that kind of volume of water coming down, I am sure a lot of debris got washed off to the low spot and basically plugged off those storm drains there."
Zalusky said that during such storms people shouldn't drive into pools of standing water because no one knows how deep that water might be or whether there isdebris on a drain at the bottom of the flooded area.