For a city that merges cosmopolitan chic with shades of the Wild West, striving to attain the best of both worlds is nothing new. Lately, though, developers are taking the “have your cake and eat it too” approach, crafting trendy, downtown-style districts and amenities in up-and-coming Calgary suburban areas. If you’re seeking to merge the benefits of the suburbs with the cool retail and cultural scene of the inner city, your search may be over.
Situated in Calgary’s west end, Aspen Landing is billed as a unique village-concept centre where people can shop, work and dine without braving the traffic and parking challenges of downtown Calgary.
“We have some popular businesses like Diner Deluxe, Original Joe’s and Crave Cupcakes, but we also have establishments that you won’t see anywhere else,” said Mary-Ann Stallings, general manager of Aspen Landing.
Aspen Landing is built around a storm-water retention pond, with inviting pathways for dog walkers or sun worshipers.
The combination of amenities draws residents from several surrounding communities, including Aspen Woods, Christie Park, Strathcona Park, Wentworth and Springbank Hill.
“Everything I need is right here.” – Kelsie London, Seton resident
“It’s really a unique development where you can get gas, shop, bank, see the doctor and do yoga, all in the same day,” said Stallings.
Across the city to the southeast is Seton, a suburban residential, commercial and institutional community with some unique features.
“What differentiates us is the ‘live, work, play’ mixture that homeowners desire today,” said Elton Ma, director of Calgary commercial with Brookfield Residential. “We’re anchored by the South Health Campus hospital and have a lot of distinctive offerings, such as the city’s only Cineplex VIP theatre and the brand-new Starbelly Open Kitchen & Lounge that is listed as a top restaurant in Avenue Calgary.”
There is capacity for 1,300 multi-family residences in the Seton urban district. Those families can enjoy the largest YMCA in the world, as well as retail and restaurant staples like Superstore, MEC, Shoppers Drug Mart, Boston Pizza and Ricky’s All Day Grill. For new resident Kelsie London, living in Seton means “having it all.”
“Everything I need is right here,” she said. “I’m two blocks from the YMCA and have theatres, banks, car wash and places I love like the Good Earth Café all within easy reach. I love being close to a dog park for walks, and knowing the fire hall and police multi-service station are nearby gives me peace of mind.
“I can stay down south and enjoy being here, yet have all the urban stuff I enjoy at the same time – that’s hard to beat.”