How Calgarians are putting living, working and play areas first

Given Calgary’s traffic, the only way to cover the critical elements – live, work and play – in three different parts of the city each day is to cut out the fourth one: sleep.

Fortunately, a new philosophy in home development lets you have it all without sacrificing the shut-eye.
“When you can live, work and play in the same area of the city, it creates a stronger sense of community,” said Elton Ma, director of commercial development for Brookfield Residential in Calgary.

A prime example of this approach is Brookfield’s Seton project, a suburban residential/commercial/institutional community under construction in southeast Calgary. Seton includes over 2.5 million square feet of office and retail space, a 16 acre park, schools, Calgary’s South Health Campus, and the world’s largest YMCA.

“A lot of communities include both retail and residential,” said Ma. “But we have the new hospital, theatres, recreation centers, seniors’ facilities, multifamily housing and a future business park, all to be serviced by the green line LRT. That broad mix of uses concentrated in one community is what makes Seton unique.”

All-encompassing developments like this are seen as the “way of the future”, and for good reason.

“Economically, it benefits everyone as there is both public and private investment. From an environmental perspective, there’s less traffic heading downtown for work, which also removes the stress of commuting for our residents. When you can zip home from work quickly and not miss out on family time, it goes a long way to enhancing quality of life, and that’s what people are seeking today.”

An interest in quality time over commuting time also drove the creation of Quarry Park, another mixed-use community in southeast Calgary. A project of Remington Development Corporation, Quarry Park boasts over 400 acres of land that is home to a market, a variety of residential developments, riverside green space and more than 1.7 million square feet of office space.

Thanks to unprecedented access to the Bow River, one of Quarry Park’s distinctive features is over 90 acres of parks and pathways that connect throughout the community. The design is part of a strategic plan to reduce vehicular congestion and to be bicycle and pedestrian friendly. At Quarry Park, residents who live and work in the community can walk or cycle to work. Punctuating the development’s focus on natural spaces is a 50 acre environmental reserve connected to the community and Calgary’s renowned pathway system.

They say “you can’t stop progress”, and when you can live, work and play in close proximity, all while getting a good night’s sleep, why would you want to?