5-family-friendly-factors-for-your-new-neighbourhood-featured-image.pngIs it time for you to start looking for a neighbourhood that has the space, recreational opportunities and amenities required for your growing family? If so, it’s a good idea to start with a checklist of the essential community features that are most important to your family. A neighbourhood with walking paths, nearby shopping and a place for community activities are all desirable, and there are several brand new communities with these features in and around Calgary.

Parks, playgrounds and green space are of prime interest for young families, along with good schools. Below, you’ll learn about new neighbourhoods in the northwest, east, and south of Calgary – all of them brand new with a wide selection of home options, from condos to estate homes. There are plenty of choices for families buying their first home or those who are moving up for more room.

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1. Shopping Options

Nolan Hill, located northwest of Calgary, has plenty of shopping centres nearby. Stores include chains like Costco, Canadian Tire, and a Sobey’s grocery store. Sage Hill Crossing, a new 386,000 sq. ft. retail development in northwest Calgary, will be completed next year.

To the east, Kinniburgh in the town of Chestermere is a growing suburb with a pet store, grocery store, drug store and every other type of shopping you might need nearby. With northeast Calgary so close (approx. 10 minutes away), you can take advantage of the Sunridge Mall with over 150 stores and a Chuck E. Cheese for the kids.

Southeast of Calgary, the Legacy community is five minutes from Shawnessy Towne Centre, and there are several other shopping malls within a twenty-minute drive. A new shopping district is planned for Legacy, and it will include 800,000 sq. ft. of retail space when completed.

Mountain View is thirty minutes south of Calgary in Okotoks and is another community that’s attracting new residents. There is shopping nearby, and historic downtown Okotoks features art galleries, museums, boutiques, and dining.

2. Services And Amenities

Nolan Hill has all of the major services offered in the big city, including a dentist, veterinary hospital, auto repair shop, and grocery store. The neighbourhood offers quick access to Stoney Trail NW (Hwy. 201) from  Shaganappi Trail and it’s only 20 minutes to downtown Calgary.

Kinniburgh knows what parents need in the morning; lots of coffee. There’s a Tim Horton’s and a Starbucks nearby, as well as a major healthcare centre for your peace of mind. Minutes from the Trans-Canada Highway, Kinniburgh has easy access to East Calgary and is only a 20-minute drive to downtown Calgary.

Legacy has convenient access to the amenities of southeast Calgary, and new light industry provides an opportunity for residents to find work close to home. The neighbourhood is located between two major highways, Macleod Trail SE (Hwy. 2A) and Stoney Trail SE (Hwy. 201), and it is only 20 minutes from downtown.

Just 30-35 minutes south of downtown Calgary, MountainView provides a streamlined route into the city. Even though it’s further away, the community sits next to Highway 2A at Northridge and Southridge Drive for easy access to Calgary. Within the neighbourhood itself, you’ll find the usual access to medical, home maintenance and financial services.

3. Recreation

Nolan Hill has a YMCA, along with a couple of other local community centres that offer swimming, sports, recreation and summer camps.

One of the biggest draws to Kinniburgh is nearby Lake Chestermere. In addition to a wealth of lake-related activities available throughout every season, this community rests only five minutes from the Calgary Yacht Club – featuring full-service sailing instruction for the whole family.

The community of Legacy will benefit from three new indoor recreation centres planned for southeast Calgary. Construction is underway on two of them, and the Great Plains Recreation Facility will include an aquatic centre and two ice rinks.

MountainView has access to a golf course, an off-leash dog park, and several family recreation centres in downtown Okotoks that offer everything from swimming lessons to curling rinks.

4. Schools

In Nolan Hill, new public schools are underway along with existing private schools while Kinniburgh boasts a brand new elementary school with a covered indoor soccer field.

Legacy currently has a new high school under construction, scheduled to open in the Fall of 2018, and a brand new elementary and junior high school are also in the planning stages.

MountainView has access to several preschools and elementary schools in Okotoks, as well as a junior high and the Alberta High School of Fine Arts.

5. Green Space, Parks, And Playgrounds

Nolan Hill is built on 500 acres of land and there are several playgrounds, along with plenty of green space and parks. Among the dozens of play areas in the northwest, one of the most popular is the Nolan Hill Castle playground with its climbing features and castle ramparts. The neighbourhood is dotted with ponds, with surrounding walking paths.

Kinniburgh used to be farmland and is built around Lake Chestermere – an unspoiled body of water perfect for fishing and boating. It also provides a relaxing spot for families to enjoy nature together. Kinniburgh has walking paths and gazebos, along with access to several walking, running and biking paths in Chestermere.

The Legacy community, built on a bluff overlooking the Pine Creek Valley, features ponds, playgrounds, and plenty of green space. The valley itself has 300 acres of environmental preserve that’s protected from development. This planned community has 15 km of paved sidewalks through the green areas.

Gorgeous views of the mountains can be enjoyed from some of the many park areas in Mountain View. There are several playgrounds and a 35-acre wetlands preserve built around an existing creek. Several walking trails wind past ponds, and the neighbourhood sits on a large plateau above the Sheep River escarpment.

One thread that ties all of these communities together is the contrast between having a home in a spacious green suburb, yet living only minutes from the thriving city of Calgary. New homes, schools, and shopping centres are popping up in these beautiful outlying areas as these neighbourhoods continue to grow. If you have children or plan to start a family soon, now is the perfect time to get involved in a community from the ground up.