About            GUIDELINES       Application


The Stella Conceptual Drawing Grants program is intended to provide “seed money” for the development and enhancement of Calgary’s parks, playgrounds, pathways, natural areas, and open spaces. The program supports projects that provide significant benefit to the continuation and enrichment to Calgary’s parks and pathways. This program was made possible by a generous donation from Mario Stella. A local businessman, philanthropist, and Rotarian who passed away in early 2013.

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The Stella Conceptual Drawing Grant program must be used to hire a landscape architect to provide a professional drawing that reflects the innovative vision a group would like to create. Up to $5,000.00 can be awarded to any non-profit organization, education institution, or group to support a project that will enhance Calgary’s parks, and open spaces. The architectural drawings also provide a preliminary cost estimate for the project, and a visual aid to show donors, stakeholders, and city representatives during the first stages of approvals.

Playground designs are not eligible for a Stella Conceptual Drawing Grant.


eligibility criteria

Applications are reviewed and evaluated by Parks Foundation staff and approved by our Board of Governors using the following criteria:


  • Project has a clear vision and describes the community need as it relates to parks and community residents

  • Project idea is complex and innovative. Ensure a local contractor/supplier cannot produce the same work without a concept design. Ex. Traditional playgrounds, rink improvements

  • Project has considered the benefit and flexible use of the park space and considers how a variety of demographics will use it

  • The project must be within the Calgary municipal boundaries

For the complete program guidelines, please view the file listed below.

Stella Conceptual Drawing Guidelines

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Should you have any questions about this service or process, please contact Sara at (403) 974-0747, sstepa@parksfdn.com.

Our application form, and privacy policy can be found below.

Application Form

Privacy Policy

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Applications are accepted in electronic format and can be submitted to Sara Stepa @ sstepa@parksfdn.com.

Grant applications are reviewed on an ongoing basis and approved by our Board of Governors.
The Stella Conceptual Drawing Grant Program can award up to 10 grants each year. 
Projects with highly complex and innovative design ideas will receive higher priority.

If desired, hard-copy applications can be mailed to:

Stella Conceptual Drawing Grant Program
Parks Foundation Calgary
225-13th Avenue SW
Calgary, AB T2R 1N8

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  • Ramsay Community Association                                                       5,000

  • Elbow Park Residents Association                                                    5,000

  • Hidden Valley Community Association                                              5,000

  • Hawkwood Community Association                                                  5,000


Mario Stella was a passionate philanthropist and found many ways to give back to his community. Born in Blairmore, Alberta he later moved to Calgary at the age of 18. After graduating from SAIT he worked long 16 hour days for the Galleli group of companies. After Mario met and married the love of his life, Rosetta, he struck out on his own, buying the Riverside grocery store. Later in 1967, he started a development business, Stella Holdings Ltd., and successfully developed numerous properties.

 His generosity and donation to Parks Foundation Calgary will provide a lasting impact through the Conceptual Drawing Grant Program for many years to come. It will encourage the forward thinking and innovative vision of many communities designing spaces for their communities.

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