Rebuilding following devastating Alberta wildfire continues

It will be a year ago this week that a wildfire swept into Fort McMurray and devastated some neighbourhoods.

The fire has been likened to a beast because it was so ferocious and unpredictable.

The blaze forced 88,000 people to flee and stay out of the city for a month or more.

In all, the beast consumed nearly 2,600 dwellings, or 10 per cent of the structures in the northern Alberta city.

There were more than 200 single-family homes started in the first three months of this year – the most since boom times in 2008.

As the anniversary approaches, the Abasand, Beacon Hill and Stone Creek areas are busy with construction.

In Waterways, Fort McMurray's oldest neighbourhood, progress is slower because of flood risk and erosion concerns.

The Insurance Bureau of Canada has pegged the Fort McMurray fire as the costliest in Canadian history, with nearly $3.8 billion in insurance claims.

The city plans to mark the anniversary Wednesday with a with a low-key day-long event in a park.