Mayor’s Urban Design Awards showcases Calgary as modern, inclusive city

MicrosoftTeams-image (6)Calgary has long been and continues to be a destination for people who want to make a great life. Historically, our city’s economy and job opportunities have been the primary, if not exclusive, pillar to this success. However, Calgary being recognized as a modern and inclusive city is just as critical to providing a quality of life that people continue to seek.

Last evening at Contemporary Calgary we recognized the professionals who help shape and build our city into one of the best places to live in the world at the ninth edition of the Mayor’s Urban Design Awards.

“Thank you to all the participants of MUDA for striving to make Calgary a more beautiful, accessible and welcoming city through design,” said Mayor Jyoti Gondek. “The success you’ve achieved here in this wonderful diverse city we call home is from your bright minds and compassionate hearts. Thank you for keeping the world’s eyes on Calgary.”

Creating high quality public spaces that are inclusive and accessible was a consistent theme reflected in the winners and honourable mentions. It’s something that is top of mind for the urban designers, architects, landscape architects, engineers, planners and artists who shape our city. It’s also important to recognize those efforts in making Calgary a welcoming place to live and visit.

“MUDA helps bring a focus to improving the public realm,” said Bryce Miranda, Partner, DIALOG (Winner Urban Design Plans, Balmoral Circus). “Our project, Balmoral Circus, aimed to make a public space the best it can be for all Calgarians.”

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“MUDA generates a renewed interest in the public realm,” said Jennifer Nagai, Partner, PFS Studio (Winner Confluence Award, Century Gardens Redevelopment). “The Century Gardens Redevelopment recontextualized a historical cultural landscape into a contemporary place. We continue to look for ways to show how parks can contribute to the livability and social vibrancy of our city.”















“MUDA defines a metric we all aspire to," said Marc Boutin, Principal, Marc Boutin Architectural Collaborative Inc. (Honourable Mention, Housing Innovation, Varsity Fire Hall). “The Varsity Fire Hall is all about inclusivity, accessibility and giving a voice to those who can be unrepresented.”

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A record 87 applicants competed in the 11 MUDA award categories, which highlight the wholistic efforts to growing a complete city; from contributing to vibrant, healthy and accessible communities; to ensuring our spaces are appropriate and accessible year-round; to a focus on buildings and spaces that contribute to net-zero emissions.

“It is an incredible time to make a life in Calgary and this event demonstrates real change that is happening right now in our city,” said Stuart Dalgleish, General Manager of Planning & Development Services, City of Calgary during the awards ceremony. “Together, we are creating better spaces and places that are more accessible, equitable and environmentally sustainable. Your efforts contribute to a beautiful city where people want to live and make a great life.”

It’s expected Calgary will continue producing high quality, internationally recognized designs, buildings and spaces. The Bow Tower, Peace Bridge, Central Library, YW Calgary Hub Facility, Dale Hodges Park and the work of CMLC are just some examples of providing citizens and visitors diverse and inclusive places to live, work and play.

“How we build our city matters,” said General Manager Dalgleish. “It is essential to Calgary’s future success, especially now, with our city competing with other local and global cities for investment and talent.”

Calgary’s past success gives us tremendous momentum to continue planning and designing a welcoming place to call home, whether for the people who live here now or those who will live here in the future.

To the professionals who participated in this year’s MUDA and those professionals who continue to make Calgary a special place, thank you for your passion, dedication and creativity. It is an honour celebrating you and the work you do.