Planning & Development

Planning Committee Members:

Andrew Connolly, Director CHCA

Daryl Connolly, President CHCA

Spencer Cutten

Geoff Muller

The CHCA is always looking for interested community residents who wish to help out or contribute to the efforts of this committee. Please contact any member of the Committee to attend its next meeting or discuss issues of interest.

The Federation Of Calgary Communities in consultation with the Planning and Development department of the City of Calgary has developed the following posters to help explain the various stages of community development and planning. They reflect recent changes approved by City Council.These changes will impact Cambrian Heights in the future. For more detailed clarifications please consult the City of Calgary website (


Download (PDF, 601KB)

Download (PDF, 1.34MB)

Download (PDF, 1.8MB)

Download (PDF, 1.99MB)

Download (PDF, 1.7MB)



Cambrian Heights, by virtue of being essentially an inner city community, is beginning to experience the redevelopment pressures associated with a growing city of Calgary. In response to this future development, the Board of Cambrian Heights Community Association (“CHCA”) formed a Planning Committee in mid-2014. The Committee consists of three Directors at this point. Participation in this committee from community members has and continues to be encouraged.

Since this committee’s formation, the members have been spending time attending seminars put on by the Federation of Calgary Communities (“FCC”) and the City itself while reviewing the City Bylaws and guidelines in relation to understanding how the City regulates the redevelopment of existing single-family homes. These issues become very complex in relation to the responsibilities of CHCA and that of the homeowners who may be impacted, either positively or negatively in value or life enjoyment perspectives.

Applicable Building Guidelines:

The Cambrian Heights Community is governed by the Land Use Bylaw 1P2007 as approved by City Council. Despite the fact that we are considered inner City and the surrounding neighbourhoods of Rosemont, Mount Pleasant and Tuxedo are included in the Low-Density Residential Housing Guidelines for Established Communities, Cambrian Heights is not. These guidelines were originally approved by City Council in May 1993 and subsequently amended in July 2010 to resolve conflicts with the Land Use Bylaw 1P2007. These guidelines are “intended to apply to single-detached dwellings, semi-detached dwellings and duplexes requiring a development permit”. These Guidelines are much more detailed in their control of streetscape and design. Both of these documents may be found on the City of Calgary website.

Permit Application Process:

While the process is best explained in the Community Guide to Planning Process prepared by the FCC in association with the City and other groups and individuals (see Links), a brief summary page is reproduced from this document below:

Flowchart of the Development Permit Review Process

The applicant may engage with the community association, the immediate neighbours, and City staff prior to making an application.

Applications are circulated to the community association and Ward Councillor.

When an application is required by the Land Use Bylaw to be notice posted, a notice (Blue Sign) is placed on the site to let interested parties know about the application.

Affected citizens who have concerns may submit their comments in writing.

Community associations may meet to discuss the proposal and submit comments in writing.

After a decision is made on a development permit application, each person who submitted written comments to the proposed development shall receive a response from the File Manager.

Approval decision is advertised in newspaper.

Community associations and other members of the public may appeal the decision to the Subdivision & Development Appeal Board (SDAB).

Development Review Process

If you are planning new construction then you should be aware that you will require a development permit from the City Of Calgary. If you are planning an addition (such as attached garages and carports, pergolas, greenhouses, sunrooms, covered decks and porches) you may require a development permit (there is a very good chance you will) and it is important to check with the City Of Calgary in this regard.

In cases where a development permit is required, there are 2 paths to follow in Cambrian Heights to get the necessary approval:

1. Permitted Use

The first path is to follow the “Contextual Development Guidelines”. If the City approves the application as conforming to the Guidelines, the Community Association (through the Cambrian Heights Planning Committee) is not consulted.

The Cambrian Heights Planning Committee encourages residents to follow this path.

2. Discretionary Use

The second path involves a discretionary use application. In this case, the community association (through the Cambrian Heights Planning Committee) will be consulted. In reviewing these applications, the Planning Committee uses the “Contextual Development Guidelines” as a basis. In addition, the Planning Committee also considers the individual application in relation to the community and any feedback received from the neighbours.

Regardless of the path followed, the Cambrian Heights Planning Committee encourages anyone considering a development to engage with their neighbours. This should be done from the outset of the project planning process and includes keeping them informed as the project progresses. In addition to helping to build a better relationship with neighbours, it provides an opportunity to identify issues/concerns that could be proactively addressed during the planning process.

A couple of great development reference documents that can be accessed through the Cambrian Heights Community Association website are:

Community Engagement Where To Start (from City Of Calgary)

Lessons Learned For Harmonious Re-development In Cambrian Heights (from Cambrian Heights Planning Committee)

Download (PDF, 83KB)

Download (PDF, 115KB)

Download (PDF, 127KB)

Download (PDF, 162KB)

Please reference our Useful Links page for City of Calgary links on Development permits.

Near Term Focus Activity:

Committee members continue to meet and discuss with the City of Calgary Planning officials to clarify the application of guidelines, CHCA responsibilities in the process and permit application trends and approval issues for the Community neighbourhood. Recommendations are being constantly developed and discussed with the Board of Directors. What constitutes contextual sensitivity for our community is an issue often discussed but hard to establish since personal opinion, location and elevation play a large role.

The Board has no plans at this time to pursue alternatives to the Land Use Bylaw 1P2007 currently in effect for our community. Should this change consultations will be organized with the community residents. Notwithstanding these deliberations, we encourage all community residents to make their opinions known to the Board members at any time. The Federation of Calgary Communities has assisted the Committee in determining the relative advantages of the existing Land Use Bylaw as compared to re-designation of the community under the Guidelines for Established Communities. Advantages and our ability to establish an Area Redevelopment Plan (“ARP”) was also discussed.

The Committee will continue to monitor City initiatives that directly or indirectly impact our community such as transportation issues surrounding the Centre Street (Green Line) LRT development and regulations or development procedural changes as they are considered or implemented.

A major event in 2018 demonstrated the strength of the community voice. The land use amendment application by Calgary Parks (LOC2018-0062) to expropriate our second largest Park Reserve (now designated an Off-Leash Dog Park) was eventually withdrawn after a concentrated community negative response and analysis of current and past Queen’s Park Cemetery practices. Your participation brings results.

As a result of this process, the Planning Committee is working with Calgary Parks to formulate a long term strategy in regards to the use and development of our community Park Reserve lands. We will be developing a Cambrian Heights model for future development of our community. Public consultation with our residents will be undertaken towards maintaining and improving the development of our community and Park Lands


Community Property Caveats

The Planning Committee of the Cambrian Heights Community Association has requested and received this letter from the City of Calgary outlining their position on the caveats generally from 1956 that exist on most of houses within our community. These caveats come into play as new developments are permitted within our community. As is clear in this letter the City views these caveats as having been replaced by new regulations and guidelines, most notably Bylaw 1P2007, that may be found on the City website ( Should you wish any clarification please feel free to contact any member of the CHCA Planning Committee. Their email addresses may be found within our website.

Download (PDF, 97KB)

Dealing with a Problem Property

Many of us who live in Cambrian Heights, enjoy the qualities of this community in terms of the neighbourhoods, it is quiet, has few main through streets, friendly people and the majority of the properties are well looked after.

But things can change all a result of one property in a neighbourhood. This happened in one neighbourhood of Cambrian Heights. Ultimately it lead to a shooting that threatened the safety of nearby residents.

The objective of this document is to inform and make people aware that there are ways of dealing with a problem property beyond just calling the police that exhibits illegal activity of any sort but particularly drug trafficking through the day or night.

This document is based upon ALBERTA GOVERNMENT’S WEBSITE:

Since 2008, ALBERTA GOVERNMENT has enacted legislation which holds property owners accountable for activity taking place on their property. This legislation enables the removal of problem tenants who disrupt neighbourhoods and destroy property. This Alberta program is Safe Communities and Neighbourhoods (“SCAN”).



The Alberta Government has passed legislation in 2008 which is titled the ALBERTA SAFE COMMUNITIES AND NEIGHBOURHOOD ACT

SCAN holds property owners accountable for activity taking place on their property. It uses civil legislation to target residential and commercial properties in rural and urban Alberta. The activities targeted are drug trafficking, prostitution, and gang related crime. If an investigation confirms potential criminal activity, investigators will contact the property owners and attempt to resolve the problem. If informal methods are unsuccessful, SCAN can apply to the courts for a Community Safety Order that calls for the owner to meet a number of conditions, or for the property to be closed for up to 30 days.

In order to implement this Act the government set up the SCAN Unit as part of the responsibility of Alberta Sheriffs who are provincial peace officers under the authority of the Peace Officers Act.

When community members report a suspicious property, SCAN investigators can:

begin an investigation,

gather information,

issue a warning letter,

mediate any dispute,

work with the landlord to facilitate an eviction or resolution, and most importantly,

apply to the Courts for a Community Safety Order that if successful:

call for owners to meet a number of conditions for a maximum of 1 year,

allow the property to be closed for up to 90 days,

take any measures necessary to safely and effectively close the property.

Note in a recent case in Cambrian Heights, the Court put a full 1 year order which included a 90 day closure. Once the property is returned to the owner, the property must be operated for 9 months under the conditions of the court order. Should the owner contravene any of the conditions of the court order, SCAN can apply for an additional 90 day total closure of the property.
It should be noted that the property owner, is charged the full costs to close the property (install fence, board all windows and doors), maintain the property for 3 month shutdown and to remove the fence/boards after the 3 month shutdown period.


First note that all reports and correspondence (verbal or written) filed with SCAN are CONFIDENTIAL.

There are two approaches:

Contact SCAN by phone 1-866-960-SCAN (7226); calls are toll free,

File a complaint online at the following webpage:

What we learned in dealing with the SCAN Program:

Once a file is opened on a property, a Sheriff will be assigned to the file. This will enable future reports to be filed directly to the investigating SCAN Sheriff.

SCAN likes to see reports/complaints from multiple neighbours when reporting events. These multiple reports are very important as this can provide SCAN with an appreciation for the impact events from the problem property are having on the neighbourhood.

The type of reports filed with SCAN included the following:

Activity Reports of comings and goings of people coming to/from the property. An effort to note vehicles, number of people, descriptions of cars, license numbers, time of day, description of people.

Reports of major events, which may have involved police and other emergency responders such as fire or EMS.

Reports of when there was property damage, property theft.

Reports of when EMS visited the property.

Reports of when Calgary Fire Services visits the property.

Reports of visits by Calgary Police Services.

Reports of when new vehicles (truck, car, motorcycles) are brought to the property.

Reports of when one observes marketing of possible stolen property (e.g. bicycle and/or bike parts).

Reports of when the known property owner visited their property.


SCAN always requests that neighbours be very careful in observing and recording activities associated with the problem property,

Do not directly engage the residents of the property or any people visiting the property.
Be careful in how one obtains any picture of suspicious activity.

In reporting events/activities, state the facts of what you are observing. Remember to note the following:

Time of day & date,

Number of people involved,

Attempt to describe the people,

If are able to take pictures, provide to SCAN

Describe vehicles involved (vehicle type, licence number, colour, if windows of vehicle are tinted),

Describe the activity observed.

At all times do not enter the problem property.

Remember people who are involved in illegal activity are not shy about engaging in possible harassment activities. If any neighbour is being harassed by residents of the problem property, they are advised to contact the Police.


Engaging the CALGARY POLICE SERVICES is very important in obtaining a shutdown of problem property.

If you are observing emergency situations/criminal activities, contact 911.

Example of the activities/events which should be reported to the police:

Discharging of firearms

Residents of the problem property openly displaying firearms


Property break-ins(house break-in, car break-in)

Property damage

Sometimes, the residents of a drug house will hold a rowdy party which continues outside the hours of 11:00 pm. Neighbours are advised contact the police in this situation.

Anytime you have to contact the police about the problem property, you are advised to send SCAN a note. SCAN will obtain legal affidavits on all police visits.

In this recent property shutdown, there were a total of 32 recorded visits to the property. These visits were a key element, which helped SCAN assemble their court case.

CPS District 3 Office – North Haven
4303 14th Street NW
Phone 403-428-6300


Given that most people have a cellular phone, an excellent tool for neighbours in a community to safely communicate is Facebook’s “Whatsapp” is useful tool. This tool is encrypted and may better facilitate collaborative communications between neighbours.


With the identification of potential criminal activities in a residence in your neighbourhood contacting the Community Association can assist with the process of publicizing your issues. The Community Association maintains close ties with a Calgary Police Officer liaison as well as the local Ward 4 Councillor and the MLA for Calgary Klein. These contact can prove invaluable in initiating contact with an Alberta Sheriff and the SCAN program. Assistance may also be provided by setting up a community committee made up of volunteer neighbours to both help accurate group communication within the surrounding residences and with the City and Provincial authorities.

Contact may be made by email to and attending a Board meeting (held monthly). Reference the Community Newsletter or our website ( for details of these meetings.