Contributors: Lisa Chong (author, infographic) + Matt Crowley (data analysis) | HSCA Community Planning
The City of Calgary has released their April 2019 census results on September 3rd. This data is available for viewing at www.calgary.ca/census. Overall, Calgary’s population has gone up from 1,267,344 in 2018 to 1,285,711 at a 1.45% increase. Population increase was largely attributed to new suburban communities: Mahogany, Legacy, Nolan Hill, Cornerstone, and Redstone saw the most growth.
A Vision for Calgary
City Council adopted the Municipal Development Plan (MDP) in 2010 in response to continued, projected population growth in Calgary. At the time, the MDP envisioned a 1/3 population growth in the established areas and 2/3 in the new suburbs for the next thirty years with the goal of a 50/50 split in sixty years’ time. The City’s recent Next 20 project was intended as a ten-year policy review of these goals (the MDP review has now been reduced in scope as a result of the City’s budget cuts in June 2019).
A Vision for Hillhurst Sunnyside
Ten years have passed since Council’s approval of the Hillhurst Sunnyside Area Redevelopment Plan: Part II Transit Oriented Development (ARP; 2009). The ARP is the policy that guides new development in our community. Since then, we have seen a steady population increase of around 1,800 people. Hillhurst has lost population in the last two years, in part, due to the permanent evacuation of residents at Kensington Manor.
Using the City of Calgary’s census numbers and 2008 population prior to the ARP, Hillhurst Sunnyside has seen a compounded annual growth rate in its population of 1.8%. By comparison, Calgary has experienced a 1.9% compounded population growth over that same time period. In order for the City to meet 1/3 of its total growth from established areas, higher growth rates are needed in mature areas.
Based on HSCA’s internal development application tracking, Hillhurst Sunnyside has a total of 25 developments ongoing with a minimum of 6 units. There is a total of 132 residential units currently under construction.
Over the next 5 years, we can expect to welcome an additional 1,800 people the community (based on completion of 30% of predevelopment projects and 60% of approved projects). This would amount to a compounded growth rate of 2.8% since 2009 and 5.8% since 2019. In part, this represents a change in consumer preferences to be located in walkable communities, complete with amenities and services that emphasize lifestyle. As Hillhurst Sunnyside residents, our livable community is something to be truly proud of. For the second year in a row, the Economist has rated Calgary the #1 most livable city in North America and 5th most livable in the entire world.
Despite the current economic climate, planning and development for new buildings in the community continues to forge ahead (see: developmentmap.calgary.ca). The community is now poised to take part in the City of Calgary’s new approach to planning with the multi-community district-based planning (see: North Hill Communities Local Growth Planning).
A Vision for Your Hillhurst Sunnyside Community Association
As a community association that serves Hillhurst and Sunnyside, a deeper understanding of the demographic makeup of our community is crucial to the sustainability of our organization and ensuring we continue to offer relevant programming to our current and future neighbours.
HSCA continually works at achieving diverse representation on our Board of Directors. This includes a wide range of ages, professions, expertise, housing tenure and geographical location in the community.
In recent years, we embarked on imagineHSCA in 2014, which was a visioning exercise for our community association. In 2017, we hosted a larger-scale community survey that served as a starting point of conversation about current programs/services and understanding the value which residents hope to gain from us. This valuable feedback is helping us shape current and future offerings at HSCA. You can review the results of our survey at this link.
While there is a general perception that community associations are made up of more established residents, we have observed a steady flow of volunteers, members and participants from a variety of backgrounds and ages. It is important to hear from not only these residents, but neighbours that traditionally have a smaller voice: HSCA meets regularly with various social agencies and non-profit housing groups to share information, build relationships and invite neighbours to take part in community life.
A Vision for the Future
HSCA continues to serve our strong, vibrant, inclusive community with a proud housing mix of rentals, home-ownership, cooperative housing, multi-residential, laneway homes and everything in between. We are an intergenerational and mixed income community. All are welcome at your friendly Hillhurst Sunnyside Community Association ❤️