Everything you need to know about Calgary’s municipal election

Calgary’s municipal election is set for Oct. 18 and here you’ll find the information you need to help make an informed decision when you cast your ballot for mayor and city councillor.

There’s a lot to look at here, including links to more detailed information about the races for council in each local ward. We will be updating this page as the election nears, as part of the CBC News coverage on radio, television and here online.

Just five current council members are running for re-election, meaning October’s vote will bring many new faces to the council table — where 15 people will make decisions for the next four years on issues that affect every Calgarian.

The stakes are high: Calgary’s mayor and 14 councillors are responsible for a budget worth billions of dollars annually.

Their decisions chart the future for our city — from the taxes we will pay, to the ways we get around town, to the water we drink, to the police and fire services that protect us, to what gets built where and how we are going to pay for it all.

  • Not sure which ward you live in? Or where to vote? Scroll to the bottom of this page to look that up.

Each Calgary voter is eligible to cast one ballot for mayor, as well as one ballot for city councillor in the electoral ward where they reside.

The ward boundaries have changed slightly for the 2021 election. Below is an interactive map of the new boundaries, along with basic information about the population and housing mix in each ward.

Scroll over or tap on the interactive map for more info, and click the links for detailed profiles of each ward:

How are Calgary voters feeling?

In partnership with the University of Calgary, CBC News conducted a poll in July to find out what Calgarians think about municipal issues.

The poll, conducted by Forum Research, asked more than 2,200 people a series of detailed questions on a wide range of topics.

Respondents were asked to rank the importance of several high-profile — and often controversial — municipal issues addressed by city council in the past year.

The results shown below represent how important people felt an issue was to them, personally, not whether they agree or disagree. (Click on an issue for a recent CBC News story on that topic.)


The poll also asked Calgarians how satisfied they were with the city’s current mayor and city council.

Remember: this poll was conducted in July, so it’s a snapshot of voter sentiment at that time.

Residents were asked at the same time about their satisfaction with the provincial government. The results from that question are included here for comparison purposes.

CBC News will be adding more poll results to this page in the coming weeks.


Who’s running for mayor?

It’s a crowded field, with dozens of candidates vying to replace Naheed Nenshi, who served as mayor since 2010 and is not running for re-election.

The field includes several members of the previous city council, as well as numerous candidates who have run for mayor in the past, along with a host of first-time candidates.

Here’s a full list of the mayoral hopefuls, along with links to their websites, where you can find more information about their backgrounds and platforms:

Who’s running for council?

Click on the links below to find a list of candidates in each ward.

Each ward profile also contains detailed demographic information and ward-specific public-opinion results from a poll of more than 2,200 Calgarians conducted by Forum Research for the University of Calgary and CBC News.

Which ward do I live in? And where do I vote?

The City of Calgary has created an online tool, embedded below, that you can use to look that up. 

Simply click on the “Find address or place” search bar and type in your address (or click on the “Use current location” from a location-enabled device) to find out.

You can then also click to find additional information on where to cast a ballot in an advance poll or on election day.


Polling details and methodology:

The poll was conducted by Forum Research on behalf of the Canadian Municipal Election Study with the results based on a telephone recruit-to-web survey of 2,209 randomly selected eligible voters in the City of Calgary. The poll was conducted between July 6 and Aug. 4, 2021.

For comparison purposes, the margin of error for a probability sample of the same size would be plus or minus 2.1 percentage points, 19 times out of 20. Results at a ward-level and other subsamples have a larger margin.

The sample sizes in the wards range from as high as 213 in Ward 4 to as low as 78 in Ward 5. As a result, estimates in Ward 5, in particular, should be interpreted with caution as they carry a significantly higher margin of error.

CBC News is including all of the ward-level data because it represents some of the most detailed ward-level polling done in Calgary to date.

The Canadian Municipal Election Study also used a statistical technique known as multilevel regression and post-stratification (MRP) to adjust ward-level subsamples to better match known population characteristics in each ward.

More details about the full poll and methodology can be found here.

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