Taradale (N.E.) This northeast neighbourhood shares bountiful amenities, from schools to recreational centres, with its neighbouring communities of Saddle Ridge to the north and Martindale to the west. The three communities seamlessly flow into one another, with no sharp boundaries. The Genesis Centre acts as a hub for all three communities, with sport and wellness offerings for the entire family.
The 2018 Calgary census puts Taradale’s population at close to 19,000, making it the seventh largest community in the city, and it’s brimming with kids – almost 6,600 of them.
“The schools are close – it only takes four minutes to drive to the elementary school – the grocery stores are close,” said area resident Mariam Usman. “These may seem like small things, but they really matter in your daily routine.”
Tuscany (N.W.) Established in the early 1990s, Tuscany is Calgary’s fifth-largest community with a population of almost 20,000. Nearly a third of its residents are children under 15.
The Tuscany Club offers community residents an indoor/outdoor playground, two skating rinks, an outdoor fire pit, and a summertime splash park and play area. Walking trails criss-cross the community, along with several playgrounds and parks. Nearby, the new Shane Homes YMCA at Rocky Ridge offers a variety of sport and wellness options, as well as summer camps.
“The community is reasonably well located, but most importantly to us, it was well priced,” said Mary Sinclaire, who raised her family in the community. “We could just get more value for our dollar here and that means a lot when you have three kids.”
Evergreen (S.W.) This established southwest community has experienced exponential population growth over the past decade, thanks in part to the addition of new pockets of housing. It’s now Calgary’s fourth-largest community with 21,339 residents.
Playgrounds and walking paths dot the community, connecting the older and more established Evergreen Estates with the newer Evergreen and Shawnee Park enclaves.
Three schools serve the community (with a fourth almost complete), which is one reason Evergreen boasts so many kids – 23 per cent of residents are under 15.
“Evergreen is just a really nice, quiet area that is full of young families,” said Paul Bushell, vice-president of the Calgary Evergreen Community Association. “It’s a safe community, and our community engagement and volunteer involvement are growing with many events throughout the year.”
Auburn Bay (S.E.) One of the city’s most popular lake communities, southeast Calgary’s Auburn Bay is a haven for youngsters – almost 30 per cent of the community is under 15.
Life here revolves around the 17-hectare lake, which is perfect for swimming, fishing or just lazing on the beach.
“Before we moved to Auburn Bay, we would have to pack up and go to the lake,” said Justin Humphries, who has built two homes in Auburn Bay with his wife Jennifer. “Now we just walk out our backyard carrying fishing rods. We can go paddle boarding, swimming or canoeing right here, or just hang out by the dock.”
The couple has two children, and there’s no shortage of playdate opportunities nearby. “At last count, there were 52 kids on our block, mostly between newborn and seven,” said Jennifer Humphries. “There is always something going on – block parties, pub nights. It’s really great.”