How new communities affect Calgary
Every year, more and more people move to Calgary, Alberta. At times like this when we have over a foot of snow in the first week of October, you may think ‘why?’. However, we actually have a very attractive city to many newcomers. Holding the ‘Sunniest city in North America’ title, the Rocky Mountains within driving distance and our economy on the mend, Calgary is a hot spot for just about every demographic (as long as you can handle a little snow!). To accommodate all of these people, the City of Calgary has approved 14 new communities to be built on the outskirts of Calgary. However, you may wonder ‘do we really need this many more when there are already so many homes available?’ Let us answer this question for you with some statistics.
As a hub for oil, energy and agricultural jobs, Calgary is consistently growing in numbers due to the high employment opportunities offered by the diverse job scape. According to Statistics Canada, we saw the economic region population grow from 1.3 million people in 2011 to almost 1.5 million by 2016. According to the City of Calgary’s Suburban Residential Growth Report, Calgary is projected to grow 15,340 people per year for the next five years, in need of 32,000 more housing units.
Both newly developed and established communities each play a role when it comes to accommodating newcomers. Currently, approximately 80% of population growth is accommodated by new communities each year. The City of Calgary would like to lower this so that established and newly developed community split this intake 50-50 within 50 years. For this the happen, there need to be more available units in even more communities.
To make all of this happen, citizens often get worried it will cost the taxpayers too much money. Luckily, the majority of the cost for these new communities will be covered by the developers, while less than 1% of the cost will be paid by Calgary taxpayers. Even though this may mean slightly more property tax now, it also means more homes will be built and thus paying property tax in years to come, supporting the city and services that we enjoy on a daily basis.
It takes years for communities to be planned and approved by city council, like the decision we saw this July 2018. It is not uncommon for Calgary to have approximately 40 new communities simultaneously in the works city-wide so these 14 new additions bring the city up to this average. This decision was not made lightly, and city council truly believes that we need these communities for economic growth, community development and a stable housing market.
If you’re looking to build a new home or buy one in the newest, hottest neighbourhood, keep your eyes peeled for these up-and-coming neighbourhoods. New communities bring more people, more amenities and more opportunities to the area and city-wide, so let’s welcome this change with open arms.