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L to R: Deron Bilous, Minister of Economic Development and Trade, Shelley Trigg, Acting General Manager at CPA, Brad Zumwalt, President Zinc Ventures, Councillor Druh Farrell, Michael Brown, President and CEO of CMLC.

The revitalization of Calgary’s sought-after East Village continues with the announcement by Calgary Municipal Land Corporation (CMLC) of a one-of-a-kind building combining a future-focused parkade with multi-use space for innovators and entrepreneurs.

The $80 million development called Platform is slated to break ground in 2019. The ambitious project is a partnership between the Calgary Parking Authority (CPA) and Platform organization founded by tech entrepreneur Brad Zumwalt.

This initiative, supported by Calgary Economic Development, addresses the growing residential and commercial needs of the East Village and Victoria Park, while also servicing key downtown destinations like the new Central Library and Studio Bell.

“The 9th Avenue parkade together with Platform is an example of the forward-thinking projects for which East Village is now synonymous, says Michael Brown, President and CEO of CMLC.”

The 500-plus stall, multi-layer parking facility will accommodate commuters in traditional vehicles, as well as pedestrians, cyclists and, in the near future, autonomous vehicles, making it "an innovation in the design of structured parking”, says Shelley Trigg, Acting General Manager at CPA.

“Platform is today’s level playing field – an innovation centre for everyone,” says Zumwalt. “We want to inspire the next generation of Calgarians with ideas. This is an investment by our community, for our community, to create jobs and economic growth in Calgary.”

If the ecosystem of tech entrepreneurialism emerging in the city today is any indication, unique spaces like Platform are a welcome addition to Calgary’s growing community of successful start-ups, incubators and accelerators.

The city renowned as an energy centre is quickly earning a reputation as a hub for tech innovation, with the likes of Startup Calgary, Innovate Calgary, and more than a dozen co-working spaces.

“Innovation is collaborative, inclusive and supportive,” said Councillor Druh Farrell at the official launch in the historic St. Louis Hotel on January 23. “It's sites like these where magic happens.”

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