Bowness Park expected to re-open by end of 2014
CALGARY – Officials say Bowness Park is expected to re-open at the end of 2014, after suffering extensive damage during last year’s devastating flood.
The City of Calgary gave media a tour of the park on Thursday, to showcase the work completed so far, and how much work is left.
The 30 hectare urban park was in the midst of redevelopment when the Bow River spilled its banks in June of 2013. Flood waters washed away a brand new parking lot that had been built, and damaged other structures like public washrooms.
However, officials say some redevelopment work done prior to the flood helped minimize damages to the river bank.
Boulders, known as ‘armour’ were placed along the river’s edge near the Stoney Trail Bridge and helped protect the land from erosion, while rock berms or ‘spurs’ also helped reduce scouring along the river bank by breaking up rising overland waters.
BEFORE: Damage and destruction at Bowness Park during flooding in June of 2013
Since the flood, debris left behind has been cleared and a new parking lot has been completed.
Officials say 4,000 tonnes of silt was hauled away from the park as clean-up efforts progressed.
AFTER: The redevelopment of Bowness Park, one year after it was damaged by June Flooding
Officials say whether or not the park is able to open fully by December of 2014 will be greatly dependent on the weather, which can impact construction.
“Crews have to shut down when it’s below -20, so we lost about six to eight weeks over the winter,” says Doug Marter with the City of Calgary. “And then, with the extremely cool spring, and wet spring that we had this year – we couldn’t get on the site as early as we’d like to.”