Calgary floods: What you need to know now
Disaster financial assistance staff will be in Calgary from July 2 until July 7 to help residents access recovery money
Thousands of Calgarians were evacuated in June when the Bow and Elbow rivers flooded. CBC News has rounded up key information and links about the city's recovery efforts.
How to access financial assistance
Disaster financial assistance staff will be in Calgary from July 2 until July 7 to help residents access recovery money.
Staff will be at the McMahon Stadium Red and White Club and the Roderick Mah Centre for Continuous Learning. Hours at both locations are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on July 2 and then 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. for all other days.
The provincial government has made changes to the Disaster Recovery Program so that flood victims will not need to wait for their municipalities to apply for disaster assistance on their behalf or for property inspections to take place before payments are made.
Those requirements will be addressed later.
More registration centre locations will be announced as times and locations are coordinated with local authorities.
In order tor receive payment, residents should:
- Visit www.alberta.ca or follow local news to find out when a registration centre is going to open in their region.
- Go to a registration centre and provide the following:
- Government-issued photo I.D.
- A list of damaged property with estimated measurements of square footage of their home.
- An alternate mailing address if they are not living in their primary residence.
- And, only if available, a letter from their insurance company confirming losses are uninsurable, a land title and photos and lists of damaged property.
- Work with registration centre staff to complete an application for funding.
Applicants will receive an initial payment by mail within seven to 14 days of applying.
The amounts of payments will be based on the size of a home, the number of rooms and whether the basement was finished, as well as the amount of detail applicants are able to provide during their application.
How to volunteer
There are many organizations seeking volunteers as Calgary begins to focus on recovery and rebuilding. These include the YWCA of Calgary, Calgary Clean Up Facebook page, Volunteer Calgary and YYC Helps.
The Calgary Drop-In & Rehab Centre is also looking for volunteers as well as donations.
To volunteer for flood cleaning in High River, Alta., go to a welcome centre at the local rodeo grounds or at Sheppard Family Park.
How to donate
The Canadian Red Cross Alberta Floods Response is accepting financial donations. Call 1-800-418-1111.
AIDS Calgary is taking donations intended to help the Siksika First Nation. Donations can be made at the AIDS Calgary office, located at 16th Street and 10th Avenue S.W.
Canadians can also donate to the Salvation Army Alberta Flood Relief Effort at the website or call 1-800-725-2769.
Samaritan's Purse Canada says it will need volunteers to help in the cleanup and recovery of flooded homes. As well, people can donate money. Call 1-800-663-6500.
The Calgary Drop-In & Rehab Centre is also seeking various goods and supplies including socks, underwear, hygiene supplies, bug spray, blankets and pillows, towels and plungers. Call 403-699-8260.
State of emergency updates
Get the latest on the state of emergency in Calgary on the city's website.
For a list of Alberta communities still operating under local states of emergency check here. Alberta Health Services has a list of communities under boil water orders.
The province has appointed Dr. Michael Trew as Chief Mental Health Officer. He will be in charge of consolidating mental health services in Alberta and making sure that support is available to Albertans who need it.
Calgary residents can call the Access Mental Health phone line for information on mental health services. Call 403-943-1500.
Those located outside of Calgary can call the AHS Mental Health Helpline for support. Call 1-877-303-2642.
Alberta Health Services is reminding people to call 911 if they are having suicidal thoughts.
Enmax has a full list of current outages affecting Calgary.
Road and bridge openings
Stability checks for pedestrian and traffic bridges have taken place three times since the flood. City officials say stability has been confirmed.
The city is also providing constant updates about roads on its website.
For more information on highway closures in flood-affected areas, see the Alberta Transportation website.
Calgarians can call 311 for any flood-related updates or visit the city's website for the most up-to-date information.
The Calgary Parking Authority is charging again for its lots and its on-street parking stalls in the downtown core. Until the state of emergency is lifted, officials say all the proceeds from on-street and parking lot revenue will go to flood relief efforts.
Calgary officials expect significant traffic congestion on city streets caused by the inability to synchronize traffic lights. Calgarians are being urged to car pool or use transit in order to improve traffic flow.
The city has set up "park and bike" spots around the city for commuters. More information, including a map, can be found on the city's website.
For the latest on transit service, follow @calgarytransit or check for service updates at www.calgarytransit.com.
Basic operations have resumed at the nearby Bonnybrook Wastewater Treatment Plant, after it was flooded and released raw sewage into the Bow River.
City officials say water quality in Calgary hasn't been affected, and there is no boil water advisory in place.
Outdoor water use restrictions were lifted at midnight on June 30 for all Calgary residents, including those in Airdrie, Chestermere and Strathmore.
How to return home safely
Thousands of people affected by evacuation orders continue to do self-assessments of their homes.
Those heading home are being urged to follow safety guidelines when they re-enter.
Only attempt re-entry if the following criteria are met:
- The road and sidewalk are dry.
- There is no floodwater on entry.
- Inspect the basement for water. If there’s water above electrical outlets, leave the home immediately.
Residents who find problems and need services restored are now being asked to go to one of the three remaining community support centres.
The community support centres are:
- Bowness Community Association, 7904 43 Ave N.W.
- Cliff Bungalow/Mission Community Association, 2201 Cliff St. S.W.
- Elbow Park Tennis Club, 800 34 Ave. S.W.
The support centres will be staffed by representatives of Calgary police, fire, water resources, waste and recycling, development and building approvals (inspections) and ATCO.
Calgarians can also make a request for municipal services through the city's 311 mobile app.
Calgary residents who live in apartments and condos should contact their building managers.
The Canadian Red Cross is asking Calgarians looking to connect with family members who have been displaced to call 1-866-696-6484.
For a comprehensive list of affected city services and evacuations, check the City of Calgary blog here.
How to clean up safely
While floodwaters have receded, officials are now warning Calgary residents to be aware of the health risks associated with returning to flooded homes.
Alberta Health Services is warning homeowners to be careful of asbestos when removing flood-damaged materials from their homes. AHS says many houses built before the mid-1980s may contain asbestos in building materials such as drywall, ceiling tiles and insulation.
Residents are being asked to wash their hands thoroughly and often, and to wear respiratory masks.
If your home is being reconnected to power, make sure all appliances are powered off.
Electrical appliances should be unplugged as soon as residents return home.
City Hall re-opened on July 4 with limited services.
Mayor Naheed Nenshi said he plans to bring a proposal to council for a two-week grace period on late property taxes, extending the time people could hand in without penalty until July 12.
Many roads and trails in Kananaskis Country are closed as they are unstable and pose a safety risk.
Alberta Parks has information about provincial park closures. They will offer full refunds for campground reservations cancelled between now and the end of July.
Parks Canada has re-opened Banff National Park and has updated information on its website.
Canada Post has set up depots around the city where people in flood-affected areas can pick up their mail.
Schools, final exams
Report cards will be mailed to those who were unable to attend Thursday's half-day at Calgary's public and Catholic schools.
Grade 9 Provincial Achievement Tests are cancelled in Calgary and students received the mark awarded by their teacher.
The Calgary Board of Education has cancelled Grade 12 diploma exams, but will make arrangements for those students who still want to write the exams.
The University of Calgary's four campuses are now open.
Classes also resumed at Mount Royal University and examinations have been rescheduled. For details, go to the university’s website.
Classes held on the Bow Valley College campus and online are cancelled until further notice.
For a list of emergency alerts in Calgary and Alberta, check here: emergencyalert.alberta.ca.
Evacuees with no place to stay can access help at Centre Street Church, 3900 2 St N.E., between 1 p.m. and 8 p.m. daily.
People can take pets to the Animal Service Centre, at 2201 Portland St. S.E.
Recycling collection suspended
Blue cart collection service has been suspended in all Calgary communities until further notice. Residents are asked to store recyclable materials until collection resumes or take them to community recycling depots.
Other residential collection services will continue on usual collection days for communities not impacted by flooding.
The city's waste department is picking up garbage at least once a day in previously flooded neighbourhoods. Calgary's landfills will accept garbage and household waste from the flooding. Mud and slurry should not be dumped in the river, but taken to the Highfield/Bonnybrook Snow Dump Site at 1442 46 Ave S.E.
The Calgary Court Centre and The Calgary Court of Appeal have re-opened. People with scheduled trials can go to the Alberta Justice website for more information.
In Calgary, 24-hour urgent care services at the Sheldon M. Chumir centre have re-opened. The facility did not suffer flood water damage and has passed a building inspection.
For a list of which health-care centres are affected by flooding in other southern Alberta communities, including High River, Canmore and Sundre, check the Alberta Health website.
The Central branches of the Calgary Public Library will be closed until further notice. All other library branches are open.
With the exception of the Central branch, libraries are now ready to accept returns of library materials.
Items with a due date of June 1 to 30 have had that due date extended to July 15. Fines and fees charged for late material and those with flood-related damage will be waived until further notice.
The Epcor Centre for the Performing Arts has reopened.
Organizers of the Calgary Stampede said that the 101st edition of the Stampede will go ahead as scheduled from July 5-14. Some events at the Saddledome have been cancelled, including four concerts.
Shakespeare in the Park's production of Romeo and Juliet has relocated to the amphitheatre at Mount Royal University.
Citizen and foreign services
The Harry Hays building downtown reopened on July 2 with all Government of Canada programs and services. The building is home to departments including the Passport Office, Service Canada, Citizenship and Immigration and Canada Revenue Agency, and will be resuming normal operations at that time.