Guide for Local Area Planning update: June 2021

The Guide for Local Area Planning (formerly known as the Guidebook for Great communities) was considered and accepted by SPC on Planning for Urban Development (PUD) on May 5, 2021.

Moving forward, this Guide will be used as a best-practice document to guide local area plans that are already underway, including the Heritage Communities Local Area Plan.

The Guide has established a common language and toolbox, allowing for clear and consistent interpretation and direction, as well as flexibility, for communities to shape the local area plan to address local context and needs.

As an administrative document, policies from the Guide will be pulled directly into local area plans to create a single document with all policies located in one place. Policies and tools that are included in the local area plan, taken from the Guide, will be statutory policies if/when that local area plan is adopted/approved by Council. Opportunities to update and improve the Guide will be ongoing and captured through the local area planning process. Potential Guide refinements will be brought forward to Committee with each draft local area plan.

Heritage Communities LAP: Next Steps

The project team is continuing to draft policies for the LAP and incorporating feedback where appropriate. A first draft of the plan is anticipated to be shared in early 2022. Please check back here for updates or join our email list.

The project team will also be connecting with the Heritage Communities LAP working group this summer to discuss what the new Guide for Local Area Planning means for the Heritage LAP process, timelines and next steps.

The next phase of public engagement, Evaluate, will kick off later in 2021 and topics, options and alternatives for the Plan will be explored further.

COVID-19 Project Update

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been some impacts to the Heritage Communities project timeline:

  • Project timelines have been adjusted as required to ensure meaningful public engagement can take place in connection with the project.
  • The timeline for working group sessions has also been adjusted as required.
  • Any online or in-person public engagement opportunities scheduled in the future will be shared as soon as they are confirmed.

We will continue to provide updates on this project and its timelines as we move through the LAP process.

Phase One Engagement

We have officially concluded Phase One: ENVISION. Phase One was inclusive of broad public engagement through a number of events and online that occurred throughout the Fall/Winter 2019/20, in addition to four working group sessions that wrapped up in January 2020.

  • A What We Heard Report summarizing all of the phase one engagement can be found here.
  • If you want to see what happened in phase one, please click here.
  • If you want to see what the working group has been up to throughout phase one, please click here.


The Heritage Communities Local Area Planning project includes the residential communities of Eagle Ridge, Kelvin Grove, Kingsland, Fairview, Haysboro, Acadia, Southwood, Willow Park, Maple Ridge and Chinook Park as well as the industrial communities of Fairview Industrial, East Fairview Industrial, and Glendeer Business Park.

Through the local area planning process, we’ll work together to create a future vision for how land could be used and redeveloped in the area – building on the vision, goals and policies outlined in Calgary’s Municipal Development Plan and the proposed Guidebook for Great Communities.

To learn more about The City's overall Local Area Plan strategy, which this project is a part of click here.

Why is this happening?

Communities change and evolve over the years. Buildings gain character, community demographics change, trees mature, local amenities and businesses change ownership and offerings. A big part of a community’s life cycle is redevelopment, which often begins when communities reach a certain age and homes, buildings and amenities need to be refreshed and revitalized or renewed and replaced.

Looking more broadly, across the whole city, we need to consider where and how growth and development should happen. We need to consider the sustainability and our city’s urban footprint, we need to ensure existing infrastructure can be maintained and amenities and facilities in established neighbourhoods have the population needed to support them to ensure they continue to thrive. We also need to balance the need to grow and develop with the need to retain and enhance the unique character of our neighbourhoods, historical resources and the natural environment.

What is local area planning?

Through local area planning, we look at the fabric of a specific local area, the community’s vision for the evolution of the area, the ideal places to accommodate growth, and how to make the best use of limited land – balancing the need to increase density, improve mobility and enhance places and spaces to live, work and play.

Increased growth and redevelopment is anticipated in the residential communities of Kelvin Grove, Eagle Ridge, Chinook Park, Kingsland, Haysboro, Southwood, Willow Park, Maple Ridge, Acadia, and Fairview; and, three Industrial Communities (Fairview Industrial, East Fairview Industrial, and Glendeer Business Park). These Industrial communities are considered different and independent communities, they are not part of the Fairview Communities or any other communities. over the next few decades.

Working together, we will create a local area plan to help guide growth and redevelopment in a way that integrates and enhances existing community character and ensures the area is vibrant and thriving in the future.


Ward 11 Boundary Map

The Heritage Communities Local Area Planning project is one of the 42 multi-communities areas in the city. This project includes the the residential communities of Kelvin Grove, Eagle Ridge, Chinook Park, Kingsland, Haysboro, Southwood, Willow Park, Maple Ridge, Acadia, and Fairview; and, three Industrial Communities (Fairview Industrial, East Fairview Industrial, and Glendeer Business Park). These Industrial communities are considered different and independent communities, they are not part of the Fairview Communities or any other communities.

Through the local area planning process, we’ll work together to create a future vision for how land could be used and redeveloped in the area – building on the vision, goals and policies outlined in Calgary’s Municipal Development Plan and the Developed Areas Guidebook.

A new local area plan will fill gaps in communities/areas where no local plan currently exists and replace other plans that are largely outdated. In this project context, the local area plan will cover multiple communities and will be adopted by Council as an Area Redevelopment Plan.

Currently, the Heritage Communities area has five local policy documents, each covering different portions of the area. These documents were originally created between 1980 and 2017 including:

*(date in brackets indicates year of original adoption or when an entire new version was adopted)

Updating, consolidating or rescinding policies in the above plans will provide a more comprehensive picture of where growth should occur in the future. This is particularly important for key growth areas such as our Main Streets and primary transit corridors such as the Red Line and BRT, in the area. Identifying local growth opportunities along these corridors and within communities is important in order to support existing schools facing declining enrollment, retain and expand the variety of commercial and retail services and support recent and future investment in transit infrastructure.


What is a local area plan?

A local area plan is a plan that provides local-specific direction to indicate and guide where growth and change should happen within a specific local area. Throughout The City these exist as statutory and non-statutory plans and include but are not limited to: Area Redevelopment Plans, Area Structure Plans, Station Area Plans, Design Briefs, Land Use Studies etc.

For those wanting to do further reading, here are some helpful background documents on the project, City planning processes and/or growth and redevelopment. As the project progresses, this library will be added to.

Background handouts:

Background videos:

Background maps:

Other projects in the Heritage Communities Area:

City-led projects (past & current):

Community-led projects:

Community Profiles:

  1. Acadia
  2. Chinook Park
  3. Fairview
  4. Eagle Ridge
  5. Kelvin Grove
  6. Kingsland
  7. Haysboro
  8. Maple Ridge
  9. Southwood
  10. Willow Park


  • Learn more about why developed communities need to evolve, how growth and redevelopment is managed and why local area plans are important – DISCOVER and learn more now.
  • Stay connected by subscribing to receive information about upcoming engagement opportunities and key project updates.

There will be multiple opportunities to get involved and provide input within each phase. Learn more about who can get involved and how public input will be used by clicking on the tabs below.

Opportunities to get involved online will be linked below and details about event in the community will be shared in the "Key Dates" section on this page.


Anyone who is interested in the project can get involved. This includes anyone who lives, works or visits in the area, anyone who owns property or land, anyone who is considering opening a business in the area or proposing a new building or development in the area.

Having a broad range of participants and input will help ensure a variety of perspectives are considered in the development of the local area plan.


The City defines engagement as:

Your input, and the input of other citizens and stakeholders, helps City decision makers understand people’s perspectives, opinions, and concerns. Input collected in each phase of the project will be compiled and share through a What We Heard report.

Decision makers will consider public input and aim to demonstrate how input has influenced decisions or if decisions were not influenced by public input, explain why.

Although it would be a great outcome, the goal of public engagement is not to reach consensus or make everyone happy. Public engagement is also not about voting or collecting representative information. Public engagement is about considering the input, ideas and perspectives of people who are interested or impacted by decisions, before decisions are made.

Public input is an important part of local area planning, but is one of many areas of consideration in the decision-making process.

Who makes the final decision?

Council is the ultimate decision maker on the local area plan. City Administration will make a recommendation to Council and the local area plan will be adopted by Council through a Public Hearing of Council. Members of the public are invited to address Council and speak at the Public Hearing. When a Public hearing is scheduled details will be made available on this site.


Multi-Community Local Area Plan Engagement Program Overview

The engagement program created for multi-community local area plans will provide the opportunity for citizens to participate in meaningful engagement and have input into the decisions that determine what the future of their community looks and functions like. As we developed our program the following considerations were made to help influence the overall process.

1. Phased Program

The engagement process for the multi-community plans has been designed as a multi-phased approach where we will collect input at key intervals throughout the planning process.

In phase one we will look to gain a high-level understanding of the strengths, challenges, opportunities and threats about future redevelopment in the area from the broader public. This high-level input collected will be used to inform conversations with the project working group where we will do a deeper dive into technical planning matters to develop draft concepts and ideas.

In phase two we will share the draft concepts that have been created and informed by the public feedback in phase one. The public will be asked to provide feedback that helps evaluate the proposed concepts to inform the final plan.

In phase three we will share the final proposed plan and demonstrate how what we heard throughout the engagement process has been considered in the final plan.

2. Inclusive Process

Throughout our engagement we will ensure an inclusive engagement process that considers the needs of all stakeholders and seeks to remove barriers for participation. We will do our best to make public engagement accessible to all, despite their resource levels or demographics that might prevent them from being included in the process. We will ensure that, at the very least, they are aware of the opportunity to participate and know we are interested in hearing from them. Accessibility accommodations will be made available for engagement events by request. Participants can request accommodations in advance through 311.

3. Participation Interests & Intensity

Our engagement program has been designed to cater to the different participation interests and intensity that stakeholders are willing to commit to a project. This includes having a variety of communications and engagement tactics available for involvement so that people are able to get involved at the level that best suits their needs. Every project and its corresponding stakeholders require a different mix of online and in-person techniques. The techniques selected for a project will be informed by the local context of an area, where we will look to balance the needs of all of the communities in the multi-community plan area.

4. Grassroots Conversations

Throughout our engagement we will look to take a grassroots approach and create a sense of community, positive advocacy and grassroots community participation. We will look to achieve this by empowering stakeholders to have conversations and ignite interest about growth and redevelopment with their fellow community members. We will support this through the development of a conversation kindler tool. In addition, through our planners in public spaces program, we will look to engage with citizens while they are out at various destinations or events through the community and ignite interest in the planning process.

5. One City/ One Voice

During our engagement we will look to better serve citizens, communities and customers through our program approach in a way that is cohesive, collaborative and integrated and works together as “One” for “Calgary.” Where timelines and resources allow we will ensure coordination and collaboration with other City departments and projects to ensure a One City/ One Voice approach.

6. Clear Stakeholder Reporting

We will achieve transparency through clear stakeholder reporting and ensure that we connect the dots between the input being sought and how this is used to inform decisions through the entire process.