Even though the state of emergency in Calgary was declared two days earlier, the water level of the Bow River was still peaking on June 23, 2013. 26 neighborhoods around the Bow and Elbow Rivers had been evacuated. Many homes and businesses were already under water. However, there was still a chance to save dozens of homes in the community of Inglewood, but only if the riverbanks could be stabilized.
At 6:30 that evening, a General Manager at the City of Calgary called Michael Thompson of our Transportation team with a long-shot urgent request. They needed rock. And lots of it. If we could somehow find enough large rock to bolster the riverbanks in the Inglewood/Calgary Zoo area, we could prevent the imminent further erosion. Michael got on the phone, calling everyone he could think of to help. Eventually our Community Development team, in collaboration with some of our development clients and vendors, sourced 30,000 tons of rock, and the equipment to haul it. By 10:00 PM that same night, trucks were rolling with the rock that was desperately needed to avoid more devastation from the swollen Bow River. With the rock in place, the bank held, and an untold number of homeowners were able to help their neighbors who weren’t so lucky.