Welcome to the Watershed!
The Confederation Creek watershed (drainage area) covers an area of 2700 hectares of NW Calgary, encompassing communities from Shaganappi Trail NW, all the way to Edmonton Trail NE on the south side of Nose Hill; from Brentwood and Varsity to Highland Park and Thorncliffe Greenview.
Confederation Park is where most Calgarians know and see Confederation Creek. Downstream of the park, the creek enters the storm sewer system via a concrete vault at 30 Ave NW. Many of the streams in the confederation creek watershed were buried in concrete pipes through a process known as “culverting” during the development of area communities beginning in the 1950’s. For this reason, many residents are unaware that they even exist. A portion of Queen’s Park Creek remains above ground in the northwestern portion of the cemetery, supplying a steady year-round flow of cold clean groundwater to Confederation Creek. It too is culverted for the remainder of its length however, meeting Confederation Creek underground near the intersection of 4th street and 40th ave NW.
Downstream, The Highland Park Valley sees Confederation Creek meet several tributaries including Trafford Creek and McKnight Creek, both culverted streams originating on the SE slopes of Nose Hill and flowing beneath roads and greenspaces to the valley. Confederation Creek then flows beneath center street and winds south and east through greenspace to reach Nose Creek at stormwater outfall N25, across Edmonton Trail from RONA.
Much of the water falling in the watershed as rain or snowmelt, and groundwater which slowly percolates downhill through soil and rock, ends up in Confederation Creek via stormwater, springs, and tributary streams. Rain rushes to Confederation Creek, causing flooding during large rain events due to the large watershed area, much of which has been converted to pavement, rooftops, roads and hard surfaces, rushing through concrete pipes preventing the slowing, filtering, and settling that happens in natural stream corridors.
Bringing some of these buried streams back to the surface where they can be restored and enjoyed by Calgarians is an exciting opportunity commonly referred to as daylighting. The FOCC is working dilligently to get the word out about these underappreciated watercourses, and to advocate for their restoration, including daylighting.
Learn more about the history of this place!
We've created a collection of maps and historical imagery for you to explore the watershed in 1924 and today, to see how the watershed has changed and where opportunities exist to restore the buried streams of the area.
Uncovering Confederation Creek
Thanks to funding support provided by the Land Stewardship Center of Canada, through the Watershed Stewardship Grant, we've launched the "Uncovering Confederation Creek" project. If you live in the watershed, watch your mailbox for a printed watershed map, detailing important places in the watershed and helping raise awareness of the existence, importance, and need to protect and restore the health of the Confederation Creek watershed. A digital version of the map is shown below! If you would like a paper folding copy, or to help distribute them in your neighborhood, please let us know!
Donations and memberships ($20) for the Friends of Confederation Creek are gratefully appreciated and can be purchased by cash, cheque or etransfer, please contact us at email@example.com