What is the Beltline Neighbourhoods Association?
The Beltline Neighbourhoods Association is a vibrant new community association for the Beltline district in urban Calgary encompassing the neighbourhoods of West Connaught, Connaught Centre, Victoria Centre and East Victoria.
We are proud to be a recognized member of the Federation of Calgary Communities along with over 200 other community associations and non-profit organizations in Calgary and are officially registered with the Alberta Government.
The Beltline Neighbourhoods Association is a grassroots organization founded by engaged residents with a history of service in their communities who wanted to build an accessible and diverse association open to all residents to get involved in making the Beltline an even better place.
The objectives of the Beltline Neighbourhoods Association are to:
Promote and foster community spirit and strong relationship building among the residents of the Beltline.
Establish and support the recreational, cultural, social, athletic and educational activities of the residents of the Beltline.
Serve and promote the interests of the Beltline.
Provide local residents with the tools and resources they need to make our community strong and thriving.
Why do we need the Beltline Neighbourhoods Association?
We believe that the Beltline has the best neighbourhoods in Calgary and want to empower its residents and businesses to make them even better. By engaging the residents and businesses that call Beltline their home, we can harness the talents and energy of this incredibly diverse community to build a strong cultural, economic and social foundation.
It’s a critical time for the Beltline residents and businesses to play a role in shaping the future of the Beltline district in Calgary:
The new Green Line LRT will be passing through the neighbourhoods of East Victoria and Victoria Centre with a station planned just south of the Calgary Tower.
Stampede Park and Victoria Park will be seeing accelerated development under the Calgary Municipal Land Corporation with a new master plan for the area.
17th Avenue SW will be undergoing a revitalization to improve the street environment of the landmark avenue.
New business districts are developing along the west end of 10th, 11th and 12th avenues in the Beltline.
The Beltline needs an organization to advocate on behalf of its residents and businesses on these projects and many others to ensure the best outcomes for our neighbourhoods.
How is the Beltline Neighbourhoods Association Governed?
The Beltline Neighbourhoods Association is dedicated to an open governance model as promoted by the Federation of Calgary Communities to ensure all residents can play a role in improving their neighbourhoods. We prioritize respecting a diversity of voices and strive to have a wide variety of people from different backgrounds and with different experiences on our leadership team. Our Board of Directors is elected at an open AGM.
Who is the Beltline Neighbourhoods Association?
The Beltline Neighbourhoods Association was founded by engaged Beltline residents with a history of service in their communities who wanted to build an accessible and diverse association open to all residents to get involved in making the Beltline an even better place.
2016-2017 Board of Directors:
Peter Oliver - President
A longtime resident of Calgary’s Beltline, Peter has been at the vanguard of change bringing better representation to Calgary’s urban neighbourhoods at all levels of government. Peter has also co-founded movements that led to the successful City Council approval of the Cycle Track Network and coalesced citywide support for better regulation of secondary suites. Listen for Peter's community show, The Palgary Almanac, on alternating Thursday mornings from 7AM - 10AM on CJSW 90.9FM and podcast on iTunes.
Cheryl Johnson - Vice President
Cheryl is a lifelong SW resident who moved to the Beltline in 2012 after a stint in Ontario. She became an active community volunteer after being inspired by Calgarians taking action to make positive change in their communities upon returning to the city. Her volunteering spans political campaigning, bike fun, music and community-focused events; while her professional career focuses on climate change policy in the energy sector.
Marta Ligocki - Secretary
Since returning from university in Victoria, I’ve become a very active member of Calgary’s cultural community. Since 2013 I’ve hosted a show on CJSW 90.9FM focusing on Canadian music, with emphasis on the local music scene. I organized and managed the annual CJSW Funding Drive in 2014, successfully raising over $250,000. As part of my work at Quickdraw Animation Society, I secured grant funding from the Canada Council for the Arts and prepared financial statements for an Alberta Foundation for the Arts Audit. I’m currently serve on the CJSW Board of Directors where I oversee business decisions of the organization. Additionally, I work at the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra as the Digital Media Coordinator where I prepare weekly e-newsletters, manage all social media, and update the website.
Jason Gallant - Treasurer
Jason Gallant has lived in Victoria Park for 12 years. He graduated from Mount Royal College in 2004 with an Accounting Degree, and earned his CPA, CGA in 2009. He is currently the Controller of a junior oil and gas company in downtown Calgary. In his spare time he enjoys writing music, brewing (and drinking) beer, and playing squash. Usually not all at once.
Ben is an Edmonton transplant who has been a proud Beltline resident for the last 4 years. He originally chose Beltline as his new home for its walkable streets, abundance of restaurants and shops, and rich local history. Ben works as a professional urban planner, and is most passionate about helping people connect. He is a strong advocate for heightened standards of civic amenity and is excited by the potential of urban design to knit together community, and contribute to a special sense of place. To relax Ben is most likely on busy patio somewhere enjoying a coffee or beer with friends or a novel. His favorite way to spend a weekend is to try out a new restaurant or two and go out for a long bike ride on Calgary’s pathway network. Ben is keen to support the Beltline and help it continue to evolve into the best inner city community in Calgary.
Tyson has been a resident of urban Calgary ever since returning to the city in 2008 following a four-year stint in Vancouver. As a registered architect, Tyson is passionate about city building, and has taken a particular interest in the intersection of infrastructure, buildings and landscape. He has had an opportunity to participate on a number of important inner city projects such as the West LRT Blue Line extension, the 7th Avenue refurbishment and several office and mixed-use developments. Over the course of his four years living in the the Beltline, Tyson has been actively engaged in the community with an interest in planning, development and policy issues. As a founding member of the BNA, he hopes to continue with this role and help the Beltline realize its potential as one of Calgary’s best places to live, work and play.
Lindsay Fischer is an urban planner at the City of Calgary. She has happily lived in the Beltline for the past six years. Born and raised in Calgary, Lindsay understands the important role this inner city neighbourhood plays in the creating a liveable city for all Calgarians. After returning from her undergraduate studies in Toronto, Lindsay attended the University of Calgary to pursue a Masters in Urban Planning. In her spare time, Lindsay stays busy through planning a new pocket park for the Beltline located on the corner of 17th Avenue and 5a Street, volunteering with d.talks, a local organization that hosts city and design related discussions, and building street furniture to distribute to mainstreets throughout the city. Lindsay intends to run for a Director-at-Large position and hopes to bring her energy and interest in building high quality, vibrant urban environments to the Board.
I am an Intern Architect working towards my registration, I have lived in the Beltline for 5 years and I love it. I love walking everywhere and the quality of life I have in the Beltline. I have always been interested in the way a city develops and the role people and community play in that. I feel that Calgary and the Beltline are in a transitional period where more people are seeing the value in making the inner city their home/community for long term. I think that the BNA is an exciting new chapter in the Beltline and I want to get involved and engage people in the community by communicating what’s happening; whether that is a new mixed-use development or a social gathering! I think that by being a board member I will be able to have a better connection to the community and help ensure that it remains the best place to live in our beautiful city!
Evan Goldstrom is an urban planner who is proud to live and work in the Beltline. As a Beltline resident, Evan strongly values his ability to walk to work, easily access amenities, and be close to some of the City’s most signi cant cultural spaces. Currently Evan’s work practice is largely focused on parks, recreation and open space planning as well as urban design. All of these are passions of his and key areas that he would like to augment in Beltline.
Evan recently received an honourable mention in the 2015 Mayor’s Urban Design awards for his final urban design studio project Industrial Landcosms. This project focuses around using landscape and park space as a central organizing factors in community planning and a catalyst for development.
As a member of the BNA Board, Evan would be particularly interested in increasing the provision and quality of parks and open spaces within the Beltline. He has previously worked on shadow studies of Beltline to determine the best location for park spaces, and wishes to continue work in this area.
Evan’s training in urban planning and passion for the Beltline make him a great candidate for the Board of the Beltline Neighbourhood Association.
Passion for community has been in Kyra’s blood ever since she was a youngster, knocking on doors for bottle drive fundraisers and helping her mom host youth sports nights in her northern BC hometown. She’s carried this community spirit with her into adulthood– and the Beltline – volunteering for Inn from the Cold, plotting green space wish lists with the Beltline Parks and Public Spaces committee, fine-tuning her green thumb at the St. Stephen’s garden project, and most recently, helping plan the inaugural Beltline Neighbourhoods Association Annual General Meeting.
Kyra works in communications at a Norwegian energy company and hopes to become a Director at Large on the BNA Board where she can use her flair for brand storytelling and event planning to make the Beltline an even more vibrant and thriving community for all to enjoy.
Jordan has worked for the United Nations and the World Bank. He has been awarded a Master’s degree in economics, a MBA and the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal for making a “significant contribution to Canada”, among other awards. Jordan is the Calgary Drop-In & Rehab Centre Society’s Manager, External Relations. As President of the Beltline’s Urban Flats condo board of directors, he recently planted three apple trees, a chokecherry bush, and ivy and built a community garden for his building’s residents. He also built a Little Free Library with the support of local Beltline artist Dean Stanton and kids from Connaught School’s afterschool program. He took over his condo’s yard care and snow shovelling and he met some amazing neighbours while cutting grass, pruning hedges, weeding and shoveling snow. He is interested in joining the Beltline Neighbourhoods Association’s Board of Directors and further improving the Beltline for his neighbours, his wife and four-year-old son.
I first moved to the Beltline in 2004 and have spent most of the past twelve years living here. I am an active community builder wherever I go and have held several volunteer positions.
My professional background is in architecture with some elements of urban planning. During my 15 years working in architecture, I have taken an interest in community planning and development policy-making at the municipal level. I hope to help carve out a greater role for Beltline residents in land use planning and development. We can build on the existing Beltline Area Redevelopment Plan to enhance local economic development by promoting diverse, high-density development that has access to green spaces and the full range of services and amenities.
Tamara is a professional Landscape Architect and long-time resident of Beltline. She believes that we are all affected by our environment and our community – so why not get involved! Tamara has been volunteering for the Beltline community for over three years and is also a member of Calgary’s Public Art Board. You can always find Tamara out and about in the community enjoying the many opportunities for entertainment and dining out that make our community so special. If you manage to spot her on a hot sunny afternoon – have a drink with her and talk about the neighbourhood!
Omar Masood was born in Mumbai, grew up in Dubai, went to university in Montreal, and has lived in the Beltline ever since he moved to Calgary 6 years ago.
Having arrived as an 18 year old to study Chemical Engineering at McGill University in Montreal over a decade ago, Omar moved to Alberta after earning his degree and now works as an engineer for TransCanada. The Beltline means a lot to Omar – he works here, he lives here, he became a Canadian citizen here, and he even met his wife Ashley here!
Omar has been volunteering within the community for the last few years; raising funds for flood survivors, organizing neighborhood parties at the Barb Scott Park (Park Jam YYC), and leading up voter engagement efforts for Federal election campaigns.
So why is he running to be a Director? As an immigrant to Canada and a new Canadian, Omar strongly believes that he would not have had the opportunities he’s been given anywhere else in the world or anywhere else in the country. Calgary’s strong spirit of community has allowed him to reach his true potential and he now wants to give back to the community that has given him so much.
Erin has lived in the Beltline (give or take a block or two) for over ten years. Her career is focused in the world of project and portfolio planning, and she spends her off-time taking part in the local food, music, and motorcycle scenes. An active member of Calgary's cultural community, Erin worked for several years as the Transportation Director for Sled Island Music & Arts Festival, and hopes to bring the festival spirit to other events in the Beltline.
The Beltline Neighbourhoods Association is made up of a growing list of members and volunteers.
Where is the Beltline?
The Beltline is one of Calgary's most densely populated urban districts comprised of the neighbourhoods of West Connaught, Connaught Centre, Victoria Centre and East Victoria and is home to approximately 22,000 Calgarians.