CALGARY, July 18, 2013 /CNW/ - This week the Calgary Business Recovery
Task Force, an initiative led by the Calgary Chamber and Calgary
Economic Development, begins the next phase of disaster recovery after
massive flooding left hundreds of homes and businesses condemned,
damaged or without power for several days in June.
The task force aims to get affected businesses up and running as quickly
as possible and to ensure the world knows that the city is still open
for business, offering a range of support to local businesses and
launching a national and international marketing and communications
The task force knows that Calgary is not the only city to experience
natural disasters, and hopes this business task force model might help
other jurisdictions in their disaster preparedness planning.
During the flooding, 110,000 Calgarians were evacuated from their homes,
34,000 locations lost power and many public transit services were
cancelled or detoured.
The city's immediate response hinged on communicating with the people of
Calgary and finding solutions for the issues that most affected the
city. In the early days of the flooding, Calgary's information phone
line received 100,000 calls and four customer service centres were
established to answer questions about permits, property taxes and more.
Within 24 hours, 1,000 lane kilometres of road were swept downtown and
within a week of the flood, 100 metres of track were replaced to get
the city's light rail transit system back up and running. Of the 15,000
businesses that were closed due to flooding and related issues, only
100 remain still closed.
The task force intends to carry that momentum forward as it begins the
next phase of recovery for Calgary's economy.
On the importance of post-disaster support for small businesses, Adam
Legge, President and CEO, Calgary Chamber, said, "Many smaller
companies that experience a disaster without preparedness plans may
never re-open. We are doing everything we can to help businesses in the
Calgary region open and get back to business as quickly as possible."
Ensuring continued business and tourism is equally critical to the
region's economic wellbeing post-flood.
"Building on Tourism Calgary's national marketing campaign launched in
early July, our task force will do its part by embarking on a
complementary communications and marketing campaign to ensure the world
knows that companies in Calgary are ready for their business," said
Bruce Graham, President and CEO, Calgary Economic Development. "We're
the same Calgary we've always been. If anything, we're a stronger, more
Canadians are encouraged to continue planning summer holidays and winter
getaways in the Calgary area. As another successful Stampede week has
come to an end, Calgary's hotels, attractions, restaurants and bars
have proven to be as hospitable as ever.
Alberta Deputy Premier Thomas Lukaszuk credits Calgary's speedy recovery
to the camaraderie exhibited by Calgarians throughout the flooding. "At
times like this collaboration is key to getting communities rebuilt and
businesses up and operating as quickly as possible," said Lukaszuk. "I
am delighted to see the co-operation of the Calgary Business Recovery
Task Force and I'm proud that Canadians can come together from coast to
coast to support each other through difficult times such as these.
The task force is comprised of the following local and national
organizations: The Calgary Chamber of Commerce, Calgary Economic
Development, Government of Alberta, Tourism Calgary, Calgary Hotel
Association, City of Calgary, C-Biz and Calgary's Business
Revitalization Zones (Bowness, Montgomery, Calgary Downtown
Association, Uptown 17th, Fourth Street, Inglewood, Kensington, and
Victoria Park), Calgary Chinese Merchants Association, Canadian
Federation of Independent Business, Haskayne School of Business,
Bissett School of Business, and Calgary Counselling Centre.
For more information about the Calgary Business Recovery Task Force,
visit calgarychamber.com or calgaryeconomicdevelopment.com.
SOURCE: Calgary Business Recovery Task Force
For further information:
NATIONAL Public Relations