The Calgary Office Revitalization and Expansion (CORE) Working Group was established in May 2021 to provide suggested actions for government to consider to help revitalize downtown Calgary as a healthy and energetic area to work and live.
Calgary's downtown office vacancy rates are currently up due to an economic downturn, a collapse of global energy prices and the COVID-19 pandemic.
In early 2021, Calgary’s downtown vacancy rate was 32.3%. A healthy downtown vacancy rate is 8%.
Results under review
Report released May 2022
Who is listening
Ministry of Jobs, Economy and Innovation
Over 10 months, the CORE Working Group assessed existing findings and suggestions from research and planning initiatives undertaken by the city council and organizations across Calgary, to determine their feasibility and outline a road map for all 3 levels of government and the private sector.
The CORE Working Group final report was submitted to government in spring 2022, identifying 4 key priorities for Calgary’s downtown commercial core:
- Incentivize Real Estate Development
- Support Vibrant Initiatives
- Develop Downtown Diversity
- Improve Downtown Safety, Security, and Quality of Life
Stakeholders’ suggestions were evaluated through the lens of these priorities to identify how provincial resources can best be used to revitalize Calgary’s downtown commercial core.
The CORE Working Group thanks all industry and community leaders who contributed to the ideas and elements within this report.
We received the CORE Working Group’s final report and are reviewing their recommendations on ways to address the growing issues downtown, including diversity, safety, vibrancy and sustainable growth.
Many of the suggested actions may also support initiatives by other levels of government, the City of Calgary’s Greater Downtown Plan, and Calgary’s commercial and residential real estate community, which supports many of the city’s key economic sectors.
Provincial support at a glance
In addition to forming the CORE Working Group, the Government of Alberta introduced a number of programs, initiatives and supports over the past few years that will contribute to the recovery and revitalization of Calgary’s downtown core.
- Calgary’s downtown core: Provincial support at a glance (PDF, 293 KB)
The CORE working group was made up of representatives from numerous sectors and affected stakeholders:
- Doug Schweitzer, Minister of Jobs, Economy and Innovation (co-chair)
- Nicholas Milliken, MLA for Calgary-Currie (co-chair)
- Desiree Bombenon, vice-chair, Calgary Chamber Board of Directors
- John Brown, dean, University of Calgary School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape
- Greg Guatto, president and CEO, Aspen Properties
- Abed Itani, CEO, Cidex Developments
- Martina Jileckova, CEO, Horizon Housing
- Patricia Jones, president and CEO, Calgary Homeless Foundation
- Adam Legge, president, Business Council of Alberta
- Andrew Mosker, president and CEO, National Music Centre
- Terry Rock, president and CEO, Platform Calgary
- CORE Working Group final report: Minister Schweitzer (May 10, 2022)
- Breathing new life into Calgary’s downtown core (May 11, 2021)
Last updated: May 10, 2022