The damage estimate to Calgary infrastructure caused by this summer's flooding continues to climb.
The price tag of flood recovery projects has hit $400 million and is expected to grow as the city rallies from the devastation caused by June's high waters, reports the Calgary Sun.
The Sun obtained a memo sent to aldermen and the mayor last week by the city's director of flood recovery, Gordon Stewart. The memo outlines the categories of projects the city is currently involved in to replace and repair.
Initial estimates pegged the damage at $256.5 million, and Mayor Naheed Nenshi said at the time he expected that figure to double or triple.
And while not all city projects are included in the memo, some of the major projects listed include restoration at City Hall and the Calgary Zoo, pathway rebuilding, repairs to the Calgary Public Library's downtown location and bridge repairs.
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Alderman on the finance committee were told in July the Calgary Zoo suffered $50 million worth of flood damage, the Central Library needs $10 million in repairs, and the Talisman Centre, a multi-sports complex on the Elbow River, sustained $6.2 million in damage, according to the CBC.
At least 16 major city parks were affected by the flood, reports the Calgary Herald, and the Parks Department could spend years getting them back to their previous condition.
As well, 93 kilometeres of Calgary's pathway system were closed during the height of the floods, and raging water left many damaged or completely destroyed.
Alderman Gord Lowe is not surprised at the growing price tag; Lowe tells the Sun, “virtually all of our infrastructure was stressed by the flood.”
The province, on the other hand, is not providing a dollar figure for damage across Alberta, instead releasing last week a massive "to-do list" of public infrastructure repairs. (Click here to view the Google spreadsheet of the repairs.)
“We’ll be hiring companies to do many of these repairs through a competitive process so the exact cost of all these projects is going to be determined once we’ve completed that bidding process,” Neala Barton, press secretary for Premier Alison Redford, told the Calgary Herald on Friday.
“So right now releasing a dollar figure ... would really jeopardize our ability to get the highest quality work at the lowest cost to taxpayers.”
Shortly after the floods, Redford warned the province some of the cleanup efforts could take up to 10 years.
"I promise you that, on behalf of the government of Alberta, we will do everything that it takes for people to rebuild their homes and rebuild their lives and rebuild their communities," CBC News quotes the premier as saying.
Barton told the Herald last week that while the province is committed to restoring all damaged facilities, public safety is a priority so projects that affect hospitals, wastewater treatment plant and seniors homes are being tackled first.
“I don’t have timelines, but I can tell you our focus is on getting those essential services back on line," she said.