Flood fortresses

Some Calgarians take extreme measures to protect homes

Calgary's mayor says he understands why some people are taking extreme measures to protect their own property against any future floods.

1 man is building a 3-metre fence around his home

Calgary business man Allan Markin is building a fortress around his home ahead of flood season. 2:00

Calgary's mayor says he understands why some people are taking extreme measures to protect their own property against any future floods.

The head of the province's flood mitigation panel, Allan Markin, has built a temporary three-metre high metal fence around his riverfront home in Elbow Park.

The plan is to remove the fence in July.

Another homeowner in Rideau Park has built a permanent wall around his home and installed a pumping system to protect it against rising water.

Mayor Naheed Nenshi says such measures must be approved by the city and cannot hurt neighbouring properties.       

“I will say that if you're going to put up a large wall that obscures your view of the river, why are you living on the river? But I understand that people are nervous about this and we're going to do what we can to ensure we're protecting everyone.”

Coun. Brian Pincott says he understands why some people are taking their own measures.

As long as protective measures don't damage neighbouring properties, they should be OK, he said.

“I don't blame homeowners for doing whatever they're doing. Whether it's building a three metre wall or whether it's spending tens of thousands of dollars going out and buying tiger dams. They were devastated. They’re looking for something that they can do.”

Pincott says choosing which flood mitigation projects are built may take more time and consideration than some would like.

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.