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Thread: Walkable Edmonton developing walkability strategy

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    Default Walkable Edmonton developing walkability strategy

    —Stakeholder sessions begin spring 2008 to discuss what can be done to make Edmonton a more walkable city

    As the City of Edmonton looks to the future desired by its citizens through the public consultations related to the Envision Edmonton, Transportation Master Plan Update and Focus Edmonton – City Plan projects, the concepts of healthy, livable, environmentally progressive communities emerge as a vision of the kind of city that Edmontonians would like to live in. Citizens are also expressing concerns about our current and future environment, our health, the design of our communities, transportation, and safety and are asking for change.

    Edmonton’s City Council has recently voted in favour of a number of new developments that incorporate walkable design features. They have endorsed the Smart Choices, the city’s smart growth initiative, which has identified walkability as one of its key ideas. A number of projects and initiatives of the City of Edmonton and others are working to give life to the concept.

    Is walkability an idea whose time has come in Edmonton? What is holding us back? While it seems there is substantial philosophic support and direction there certainly seems to be a number of barriers that could be addressed:
    • The bulk of Edmonton, aside from a few pockets, was designed with the movement of automobiles as the highest priority and this continues to be the main decision driver in most development. Can consideration for pedestrians and other forms of active transportation be moved higher on the planning ladder?
    • We’re a winter city…not Vancouver, so what can be done to enhance walkability year round?
    • A recent StatsCan study indicated 79% of Edmontonians rely on their cars to get to work. Many Edmontonians aspire to live in suburban, un-walkable neighbourhoods, in spite of growing awareness of the health consequences. What social marketing can be done to get them to consider other modes of travel or community designs?
    • There are big gaps in our regulatory framework (zoning bylaw etc.) between what would facilitate innovative urban planning and zoning and what can be achieved under the current regulations and standards. What can be done in the short term to facilitate the kind of desired development in new and infill projects?
    • While some of our mature neighbourhoods are very walkable in many ways (Chinatown for instance), safety issues prevent residents & visitors from fully enjoying them. We can build trails and sidewalks, but how can we ensure citizens feel safe in using them?
    • Accidents involving pedestrians are not decreasing, even given that Edmonton has the highest per capita number of traffic control devices in Canada. Parents are afraid to let their children walk or bike to school. What can be done to educate drivers and pedestrians to create a safer environment for those choosing active modes of travel? What appropriate infrastructure changes can be made to make pedestrians travel safer?
    • While we give lip service to universal accessibility, Edmonton is still a challenging place to try and get around in a wheelchair, a scooter or even with a child in a stroller. What steps can be taken to accommodate accessibility for all?
    • While more thought is being given to quality urban design and the animation of our streetscapes, much remains that could be done. What can we do to design and manage our public spaces to be magnets for pedestrians?
    Walkable Edmonton is a collaborative of City Departments and outside partners such as Capital Health. We are currently working on a project to develop a comprehensive walkability strategy for Edmonton. In order to present a clear picture of the work involved in giving life to walkability in Edmonton to City Council, and to have a clear plan on how to proceed with that work, the Walkable Edmonton Committee has hired Stantec Consulting. Stantec will be working in partnership with Glatting Jackson and the Project for Public Spaces to undertake the work of the project.

    The project team will identify best practices that are relevant to Edmonton as a winter city, work with stakeholders to identify gaps/barriers in research, programs, policy, funding or standards and develop a 3-5 strategy of work to address the gaps. Work on developing the strategy will begin with stakeholder consultation in the spring of 2008. The strategy will be complete by the fall of 2008.

    The walkability strategy will build on the work of the recent Sidewalk Strategy and in companionship with the Bicycle Transportation Plan Update the walkability strategy should be a big step in improving active transportation in Edmonton.

    For information on the Walkability Strategy, go to the project website.

    -- Ian Hosler

  2. #2

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    making this city more walkable is something that can turn us from good to great.

    Theres only really 2 areas I would say in this city that really meet this criterea and that's Oilver-downtown and Old Strathcona.
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    ^agreed...and we really should expand that reach for both walkers and cyclists.
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    Making this city more walkable means keeping the Jewish Community Centre as an urban service area rather than turning it into houses when it is sold.
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    I have to applaud any effort to get people and their feet moving.

    I really think that we have to look at design here. Some places lend themselves naturally to walking and others just do not.

    You need somewhere to walk to , that is a reasonable distance and meets a need. A corner store , a coffee shop, a bakery , a pub , a library etc. This promotes regular walking and a social outing. All sorts of studies show that this affinity is important .

    I think that it needs to start close to home , where you live . If we had more imaginative planning in the neigborhoods to allow them to function as a community. Ie Higher densities , more small business , walking would flow naturally.

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    i kinda wish that it wasnt against the law to ride your bike on the sidewalks. i think bike riding should be allowed. maybe bike riders must have some sort of bell or noise maker. bike riding in the street is awful in almost every street in edmonton and causes massive hassles to the point that it make bike riding not favourable.

    I think changing this would help "walk/bikerideability"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hull534 View Post
    I have to applaud any effort to get people and their feet moving.

    I really think that we have to look at design here. Some places lend themselves naturally to walking and others just do not.

    You need somewhere to walk to , that is a reasonable distance and meets a need. A corner store , a coffee shop, a bakery , a pub , a library etc. This promotes regular walking and a social outing. All sorts of studies show that this affinity is important .

    I think that it needs to start close to home , where you live . If we had more imaginative planning in the neigborhoods to allow them to function as a community. Ie Higher densities , more small business , walking would flow naturally.
    I walk everyday without any of those things because I live in a great neighbourhood with parks and places to take the dog. I've come to see more and more that you can't really socially-engineer people into being pedestrians; they will walk when they have a reason themselves.
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    Quote Originally Posted by richardW View Post
    i kinda wish that it wasnt against the law to ride your bike on the sidewalks. i think bike riding should be allowed. maybe bike riders must have some sort of bell or noise maker. bike riding in the street is awful in almost every street in edmonton and causes massive hassles to the point that it make bike riding not favourable.

    I think changing this would help "walk/bikerideability"
    it would be great if more people actually used what the city considers bike paths.

    Here's a map to them - http://www.edmonton.ca/RoadsTraffic/...%20Map_web.pdf

    Also, what ticks me off is when theres a multi-use trail that parallels a busy road, and where do the bikers go? They still remain on the road. What's the point of building this multi-use trail?
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    The interesting thing to me is that our mature neighborhoods, that were built before there was good traffic planning, are often more walkable because of this reason. If you have four way stops scattered everywhere in a Grid, it is maddening to drive through (having to stop and start everywhere), with lots of potential for little fender benders at all these intersections, but it sure does slow the traffic down, and make if very family friendly to walk around.

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    Quote Originally Posted by richardW View Post
    i kinda wish that it wasnt against the law to ride your bike on the sidewalks. i think bike riding should be allowed. maybe bike riders must have some sort of bell or noise maker. bike riding in the street is awful in almost every street in edmonton and causes massive hassles to the point that it make bike riding not favourable.

    I think changing this would help "walk/bikerideability"
    Cyclists and pedestrians don't mix well; allowing cycling on the sidewalk would not be conducive to walkability.

    I do believe that cyclists are required to have a bell, but I might be mistaken about that.

    I've biked through a fair bit of the city, and while some roads seem more "aggressive" than others (read: drivers on that road tend to be less friendly to cyclists), the vast majority of drivers are fairly courteous and understand and follow the rules.

    ...having said that, it's the rare j-----s that drives through your lane like you're not even there that ruins your day.

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    It seems to me that there are two distinct interpretations of the word "walkable."

    There's the urbanist version which is something like:

    Locating residential and commercial areas in close proximity to reduce car dependency and promote walking as residents' primary mode of transportation.

    And then there's lux's and moa's version which is:

    A safe place to walk the dog and the kids.

    By the former definition, almost none of the city is walkable. And by the later definition almost all of it is.

    Depending who you talk to, "walkable" describes two completely opposite views of city life. I hope that the city recognizes that.

  12. #12
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    There are also places where walking is impractical and unpleasant. I'd put those multiuse paths along suburban arterials in that catagory. No one walks to anywhere there because there is no where to go and noone walks a dog there or goes for a stroll because the minimally landscaped medians, poorly maintained back fences and steady stream of cars going 65 are not really enjoyable.

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    Quote Originally Posted by newfangled View Post
    It seems to me that there are two distinct interpretations of the word "walkable."

    There's the urbanist version which is something like:

    Locating residential and commercial areas in close proximity to reduce car dependency and promote walking as residents' primary mode of transportation.

    And then there's lux's and moa's version which is:

    A safe place to walk the dog and the kids.

    By the former definition, almost none of the city is walkable. And by the later definition almost all of it is.

    Depending who you talk to, "walkable" describes two completely opposite views of city life. I hope that the city recognizes that.
    I think the differences are that some people are realistic, and some people are not. If we stick a high rise tower in the middle of a suburban community, will the people in the high rise drive:

    a) More than existing residents,
    b) Less than existing residents?

    I'm betting the answer is a, and I'm pretty sure of that, because I live next to a high rise, and have lived in one. When an underground parkade is easier to access than an LRT or the front door - the parkade is where people head. By contrast, a high rise, surrounded very closely by interesting and lively destinations (bars, restaurants, cafes, etc.), like our downtown will be when we get more people living in it, will get people walking around. There is enough immediate attraction to get people to leave the car at bay.

    I think its a bit naive to think that sticking a few corner stores in existing communities (bringing the commercial to the people), will be sustainable. Will the little shops:

    a) Become empty and derelict because they cannot compete with box stores, or
    b) Thrive and take customers away from box stores?

    I'm confident enough to say it will be a, and no-amount of social engineering to turn back time will fix that, like it or not. Niche stores/commercial have a place, and will work at some high property value locations, but won't succeed everywhere (as per much of SPR and Fort Road).

    The new urbanite ideal is IMO fatally flawed, for it fails to account for reality, which is that people want box stores, but people don't want to live in the middle of them. People have different needs at different times in their lives, which is why our neighborhoods should not all try to cater to everyone, and why a walk-ability solution for downtown, or Oliver, may not work in Summerside, or Riverbend. We don't have to pretend that every neighborhood is a small little hick town with a full life life-cycle, where people spend half their lives complaining about the disrespect shown by noisy kids/young adults of today - we are better than that. I'd rather we try to be a big city, with stark diversity in lifestyle choices, reflected in contrast in neighborhood types. Different destinations to experience different things, rather than a homogeneous collection of little two bit towns stuck together. When I go downtown - I want downtown to be different. When I go North, I want it to be different from West, or East, or South. When I visit a mature neighborhood in the West, I want it to look different from a new neighborhood in the West. Lets make unique successful pockets that make our city interesting, not equivalent ones.

    That's not to say we can't plan, or make things more walkable - we can. A suburban single / multi family neighborhood, where it is difficult to drive fast, and the view is interesting (i.e. not all garage doors), will get people walking about more than a single family neighborhood designed primarily for traffic flow / traffic safety (i.e. reduced intersections). Parts of Terwilliger are far more walkable than parts of Riverbend IMO, even though parts of Riverbend are far older, with more mature trees, etc.

    Using the same thought process, we should be thinking about ways to make people in high rises walk more, perhaps through commercial or similar, before they can reach their car. In that respect, I sort of appreciate that my office building does not have built in underground parking, because it makes me walk each day. Maybe that's the way it should be downtown? I realize that is heresy to many, based on previous above grade Parkade horrors that have been built in the city, but I do think making people walk from the Parkade to the workplace (even if through a pedway) would give downtown commercial a better boost than isolating people in each new building or complex that we build.
    Last edited by moahunter; 02-05-2008 at 03:28 PM. Reason: gathering diverse thoughts into a random whole

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    Well, I'm not opposed to a "new urbanite" vision with a few provisos.

    In my neighbourhood, I can walk to my dentist, post box, gym (unless they succeed in tearing it down for "luxury" riverbank living with stucco, chipboard and IPEX columns), a convenience chain store that I use but could be replaced and I'd be fine. I can walk to my community league. I can walk to a pub\restaurant, and a chiropractor or something.

    I can also walk my dog to the park.

    I think this makes my neighbourhood highly walkable, but it only scores 15% on the walkability index. This makes me think the walkability index is goofy.

    Anyhow, there are difficulties that I see along with moahunter. I DO walk to the dentist. I do go to the gym. I mostly ignore the convenience store. I've attended events at the community league. I would never let a chiropractor near me. And the pub is a "sports" bar and that just isn't my thing although it is well beloved in my neighbourhood so I should probably get over myself and give it a try.

    See? It is good but I really want a pub without the sports. So I don't get what I want because my walkable neighbourhood only supports one. I could walk through a ravine to wolf willow - they have a similar little centre there - but no pub whatsoever. The idea of an evening walk - a nice dinner and a slow walk home through a beautiful ravine really appeals to me.

    So I do get the walkability thing. But people come on here and they talk about walkability meaning I'd have to subdivide my house 7 ways. Yes; those are the numbers quoted. And in no way would that be worth it. Instead of walking through a ravine hoping for a pub at the other end, I would just drive the heck away from my condo-infested neighbourhood to enjoy some space.

    So, first of all I dispute that our neighbourhoods are not already walkable - I do it all the time. Second of all, I dispute the vision - it is skin-crawlingly bad.

    By the way, check out Marda Loop in Calgary if you want to see what Stoney Plain Road can become - and they do it all without an LRT through the middle of it...
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    Quote Originally Posted by lux View Post
    So, first of all I dispute that our neighbourhoods are not already walkable - I do it all the time.
    I know what you're saying Lux, but I'd consider you (and your neighborhood) to be exceptions to the statistical norm.

    There are no doubt pockets of walkability in Edmonton, I should know as I live in one.... that being said, there are huge improvements to be made, especially when it comes to developing new communities.

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    Okay I realise I completely contradicted myself above compared with my reply to Hull 534's post. At least I've figured out why:
    I like having a few shops or services in the neighbourhood and I do walk to them and this is good and more of us should have that kind of opportunity.

    However, if it requires the kind of ultra-high density that makes a lot of people on connect2edmonton get all teary-eyed with joy, then it isn't worth it and I'd rather drive. Space, privacy & tranquility all outrank proximity.

    The two things can't go hand-in-hand for me to buy into it. I have a walkable neighbourhood that is 100% detached homes. But I've acknowledged the amenities we have are somewhat restricted and presumably with more people we could support the pub of my choice instead of the sports bar. Bottom line, though, I would not be prepared to make that trade-off if it meant anything like wholesale subdivision. Or even anything more than "very modest" subdivision. You could redevelop the strip mall to keep the shops and offices, add in 20 or 30 units of nice quality townhomes and I think it would work. That's about it.

    Just so people don't get hung up on thinking I'm confusing redevelopment of established areas with what we can do in new builds, let me clarify:
    I'd hate to move out of my neighbourhood. If I had to, I wouldn't even consider moving into a new one as dense as what many new urbanists are hoping to build no matter how many things I could walk to. I've seen the Vancouver kool-aid and I did not drink it. My grandfather was a realtor. He always was surprised at what in his view people were prepared to "settle for" in new construction, with developers cutting corners, trimming costs, and shrinking lot size.
    Last edited by lux; 03-05-2008 at 03:00 PM.
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    "He always was surprised at what in his view people were prepared to "settle for" in new construction, with developers cutting corners, trimming costs, and shrinking lot size."

    it is actually quite hilarious to see people in the home buying process....many have priorities that are completely off target and dont even consider the very basics.
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanO View Post
    it is actually quite hilarious to see people in the home buying process....many have priorities that are completely off target and dont even consider the very basics.
    The one that always cracks me up, is the young couple, leaving a condo because they think it is time to have children, who go to a show home or similar in an edge neighborhood, then chunk down their deposit on a nice new home (and many are nice). Only to find out 4 years latter when kiddie is ready for pre-school... there is no pre school.... let alone an elementary school...

    Good marketing is the oldest suckers game in the book I guess... at least most people are only burned once, but sadly, with a house, the first burn can be quite harsh.

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    ^yup...and while each to their own, but i cannot believe people dont look more seriously at mature neighbourhoods. I find it funny when say you are in glenora or the such for a wedding photo session and people are saying things like:

    "wow...i love the trees and these houses have such character, now this is somewhere i could live"

    but the same people live in ellerslie or millwoods or clareview. I dont quite understand it, but attribute it to "in theory"
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    ^Many people like new things. That is one major factor I've noticed.

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    It's not hard to understand. All the houses in those nice walkable mature areas are occupied, with the exception of homes under renovation.

    The problem is that we aren't building any more of those neighbourhoods with mixed use main streets and walkable block sizes, and instead we have masive res-only neighbourhoods that dump on to a very few massive arterials either lined with back fences or with big box stores and acres of parking. It's not really about density, although there is a point below which walkable neighbourhood services don't work, but I suspect that the threshold isn't as high as some would suspect, and could easily be met with a neighbourhood mix of Single family dwellings, townhomes and a few lowrise apartments along the main street. Unfortunately, we currently think that bigger is better, so we have parking minimums, big box stores and power centres for everything, not just big box goods like hardware, furnature and appliances.
    The City is guilty too, building one massive rec centre that will have masses of parking rather than the old model of small arenas and pools with bicicle range of every 10 year old in the city, with small parking lots because the occasional overflow event can just use street parking, which can't be done when the facility is so huge.

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    Quote Originally Posted by highlander View Post
    It's not hard to understand. All the houses in those nice walkable mature areas are occupied, with the exception of homes under renovation.
    .
    I don't really think the issue is availaility. There are times when a neighborhood like Glenora requires you to wait and bid on newly listed places (this is what we did), but that's not the case now. And if someone can't afford Glenora (which starts at about the average family home price in Edmonton - i.e. 400k), there are plenty of mature neighborhood options that provide the same benefits (e.g. Grovenor, etc.), for less than a new neighborhood.

    I think it is a mix of perception (people assume they cannot afford without even looking), and also preference. New neighborhoods are in may ways appealing. It is nice to own a new house, just as it is nice to own a new car. There is also the idea that a new neighborhood is "exclusive", or "crime free". With a mautre neighborhood, you can see everything up front, warts and all. We all think we know what Millwoods is, or Riverbend is, or Glenora is, or Castledowns is, but, because people don't know what the Hamptons or Summerside will be, they assume the best. They avoid the "warts" of existing neighborhoods, but for some reason, they forget about the "facilities" that they naively "hope" will be replicated for them.

    I agree though that walkability does not equate to density at all. It is more about design, and for some reason, probably IMO linked to us all being a bit lazy at the end of the day, car access and driveability has mistakenly been prioritized over walkability. I don't think it's possible to have a highly walkable community, and also a community where your heated garage is 9/10ths of your front yard. The good news to me, is that some of the new communities are starting to change this (parts of Terwilliger, which replicate the old idea of house at the front, garage at the back, narrow streets, being a good example).
    Last edited by moahunter; 05-05-2008 at 03:33 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DanC View Post
    ^Many people like new things. That is one major factor I've noticed.
    Many people lack the imagination to recognize that you can upgrade an old house in a mature neighbourhood. "I know this house has new windows and a new roof but the furnace is original and I just wouldn't feel safe because it could blow up." and then they go and spend $20 000 more on a new house with no trees, no yard, and it is covered in plastic. I think part of it is just that Edmonton is such a young city that people have no experience living in or maintaining older buildings and neighbourhoods.

    The instinct here is very much still to abandon the old, and build out, or tear it down and build up.

    As in the example above, there are probably not a lot of people who have replaced a furnace in their home, and not a lot of people who recognize that it is an afternoon job for them to come in and do it, just because Edmonton's still so young compared with other cities.
    Last edited by lux; 05-05-2008 at 04:04 PM.
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    ^thats the thing...it is perception that an old neighbourhood means a run down crummy neighbourhood. I have friends living in south terwillegar who dont have schools near them, little in terms of park space developed, and no trees...barely even grass. PUUUUUUUUUUUke.
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    I'm not sure that there is such a demand price premium for new homes and neighbourhoods over old. Sure, prices are lower in some mature neighbourhoods but I think that reflects the fact that many of the houses that go on the market haven't been updated in decades and when you add the costs of renovation the total cost of ownership in new and old neighbourhoods is similar.

    The problem with Terwilligar towne and others like it is that they are walkable in the micro scale only, not macro.

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    Quote Originally Posted by highlander View Post
    I think that reflects the fact that many of the houses that go on the market haven't been updated in decades and when you add the costs of renovation the total cost of ownership in new and old neighbourhoods is similar. .
    A funny thing we have noticed is that some old neighborhoods have much more modern interiors than others, even though the property values might be similar. Take Glenora and Laurier. I don't know why, but many Laurier homes for sale we have visited are horribly 1970's inside, whereas my guess is that 90% of Glenora homes (at least the ones we have visited), have been renovated in the last decade (with hardwood, ceramic tiles, etc.). Maybe Glenora has "renewed" a little more than Laurier in terms of original residents leaving? There are many houses on the market in "mature" neighborhoods, that are every bit as stylish on the inside, if not more up to date, than a new home, even sometimes at entry level prices for the neighborhood (if you can live with a busy road, or similar, a compromise we decided to make). I think people have images of grandparents places, or simply visit a "floral wallpaper horror", get the wrong impression, then give up. Mind you, if you "must" have a house that has been totally rebuilt (i.e. stripped to studs), then yes, the premium will be significant.
    Last edited by moahunter; 05-05-2008 at 04:36 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IanO View Post
    ^thats the thing...it is perception that an old neighbourhood means a run down crummy neighbourhood. I have friends living in south terwillegar who dont have schools near them, little in terms of park space developed, and no trees...barely even grass. PUUUUUUUUUUUke.
    and don't forget there are gun touting, panhandling, baby eating monsters in the older neighbourhoods (read: inner city).

  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by IanO View Post
    ^thats the thing...it is perception that an old neighbourhood means a run down crummy neighbourhood. I have friends living in south terwillegar who dont have schools near them, little in terms of park space developed, and no trees...barely even grass. PUUUUUUUUUUUke.
    i guess it is where you're raised; growing up elsewhere we always had the perception that new neighbourhoods were built out of economic necessity, "unestablished" places that people would try to leave quickly once they could afford to trade up to a mature neighbourhood.
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    ^growing up in Riverbend/Terwilleger, it is the absolutely opposite...it is about getting "out" of the inner city.

    to be honest, im glad i grew up there for although it was a good experience, it gave me a lot of insight into what people expect in a neighbourhood, what they see as "good places to live", and what they view other neighbourhoods as.

    Growing up i had a lot of north side friends and frequented "oxford" and "skyview" which are very similar if not identical to most parts of the SW, but when in discussion with neighbours or the like, they were congruent in their stereotype.
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanO View Post
    Growing up i had a lot of north side friends and frequented "oxford" and "skyview" which are very similar if not identical to most parts of the SW, but when in discussion with neighbours or the like, they were congruent in their stereotype.
    I think three things are going to reverse the stereotype (I hope so anyway)...

    1. The cost of driving everywhere is getting worse (both financially, and in terms of time)
    2. Increasing "wealthy" immigrants - many from Europe, who grew up in society's where to "make it", is to live somewhere established, not new
    3. People like you (and also me - I grew up in a Millwoods type of neighborhood), who aren't so rosy on the suburban sprawl lifestyle.

    We saw this a little over the last few years, as some inner city neighborhoods increased in value far more than the outskirts. Additionally, we are seeing it in the reinvestment in inner neighborhoods (lots of houses being re-built in some areas). Even the big developers are catching on to the desirability of inner land (e.g. Strathearn and VFC).
    Last edited by moahunter; 05-05-2008 at 05:17 PM.

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    "if you build it, they will come." that pretty much sums it up. developers actually put effort into selling their new developments so of course people are gonna live there. personally i dont know what the suburban appeal is but one thing i personally couldnt stand is a house thats over 25 years old, just cause of things like bugs and dirt and things like that.

    btw anything within the henday ring is fair game, anything outside "boo-erns"

  32. #32
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    ^AHD...come on dude...how about the inner ring road:>
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    Ottawa-Edmonton-Vancouver-Edmonton

  33. #33
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    I think one thing that would contribute to a "walkable" neighbourhood could be the following:

    (1) One main thoroughfare (e.g., Jasper Avenue), accessible by bus, but not terribly busy. Heavy traffic should be able to bypass this neighbourhood.
    (2) Side streets, perhaps with some kind of parking.
    (3) Residential development nearby.
    (4) A mixed variety of basic and specialty shops.

    I think that Strathcona and Jasper Avenue/Oliver provide the best prospects. However, 124 Street, Main Street/28 Avenue, 118 Avenue (Coliseum LRT-97 Street), 109 Street/Garneau, 91 Street (Campus St. Jean), Stony Plain Road (149-163 Street) offer promising prospects.

  34. #34
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    Another good walkable district is 76 Ave, just east of 114 St.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  35. #35
    highlander
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    Beverly is walkable too, and the highlands stretch of 118, while nowhere as service-dense as Beverly or Alberta Ave has some potential too. Little Italy and Chinatown certainly qualify and I think an Honorable Mention has to go to St'Albert's downtown, which has improved so much in the past 15 years. All it needs now is a grocery store, perhaps in the Grandin mall redevelopment. I mean, you could survive there walking during the farmers market season, but in the winter? you can only live on coffee and ice cream for so long.

  36. #36
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    112ave around 64st is turning out great as well
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  37. #37
    highlander
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    Quote Originally Posted by IanO View Post
    112ave around 64st is turning out great as well
    It's a great spot, but it's more of a destination then a walkable neighbourhood as services go. If it were a little bigger it could eventually get to be a real walkable node, but like downtown st. albert it doesn't have the necessities. It has 2 restos, yarn shop, 2 realtors, MLA office, Insurance office, frame shop/gifts/art/flowers, antique shop, retro kitch and furnishings glasses shop, bookstore/coffeehouse and local designer casual womens clothing.

    Unfortunately the rest of 112 was all rezoned for single family homes in the early 80s. I believe the mixed use zoning was larger before then, although I don't think any retail was demolished.

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