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On September 30, 1981, Calgary was awarded the 1988 Winter Olympic Games.   This announcement transformed Calgary from a small oil and gas city in the province of Alberta that was best known for the Calgary Stampede, into an international destination that would soon become known throughout the world.

 

Beginning almost immediately, Calgary started construction on many of the venues that would be needed to be built to accommodate 1423 athletes from around the world that would be coming to our city to participate in 46 events.   Among the biggest venues that would need to be completed were the iconic Saddledome as well as the Olympic Oval, which would be completed on the campus of the University of Calgary.   This construction boom helped Calgary become known as an international destination for everything from tourism to trade to new residents coming to our city for new opportunities.

 

In the years after the hugely successful Olympic Games, many large corporations such as CP Rail moved their head offices to Calgary because it was an ideal city to work and live.   As such, the population of Calgary grew extensively.   With this new growth in population, many new accommodations were needed for the many new citizens flocking to the city.   New communities were built, extending the city lines.   Record numbers of new apartment style condominiums were also started with many helping to change the look of the Calgary skyline into what we enjoy today.

 

Now that there is talk of bringing the 2026 Winter Olympics to Calgary, there is much anticipation as to whether Calgary can recreate the 1988 “Magic” not just for a successful Olympics, but also for the economic benefits that were experienced after the 88 games.

 

There is hope among many citizens that any new venue or housing project would again continue to be used after the games end and help the city of Calgary user in a new era of prosperity in business, housing, and population growth.

While it might be too early to anticipate what will happen with this new Olympic bid, the hope among many of our peers is that this will again transform the landscape of Calgary for generations to come.

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Located a short 10-minute drive from downtown Calgary, is the community of Marda Loop.   This reinvigorated and trendy neighborhood is a popular destination point for people from all across the city.   Marda Loop is home to approximately 130 restaurants and shops as well as hosting a multitude of other businesses and is located right off of Crowchild Trail in SW Calgary.

 

 

The history of this now inner-city community dates back to 1909 when Marda Loop was once a trolley car loop that carried people to downtown Calgary as well as to outlying areas.   In 1953 the Marda Theater was built and quickly became a major attraction and landmark.   The theatre was popular with the community and served the residents as well as the nearby Canadian Forces Base, until it closed in 1988 and was eventually demolished in 1990.

 

In the early 1990’s, the Canadian Forces Base closed and the population in the area was dramatically affected by the exit of military personnel and their families from the area.   Soon after this, a well thought-out revitalization and redevelopment plan for the surrounding areas was started and it created Garrison Woods and Currie Barracks.   This helped create a resurgence and revitalization of Marda Loop.    With a newfound popularity, newer higher income residents started to notice, and a construction boom started replacing older detached homes with newer high density infills and multi-family condominiums.  This led to an increase in the neighborhood population.

 

New families and residents are moving into Marda Loop at record rates and the neighborhood continues to attract attention with a variety of community-based events like the yearly Stampede Breakfasts that can be found along 33rd Ave or the Marda Loop Mardi Gras which is going into its 33rd year.   This event attracts over 35,000 people from all over Calgary and features live music, unique shopping and lots of great food.

 

Marda Loop is a must-see when looking to get out and about in Calgary!

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