Phase 3: REFINE begins October 24

Phase 3 of the Riley Communities Local Area Planning project is open Oct. 24 - Nov. 13, 2023. Check back to learn more and share your input.


Communities change and evolve over time.

Conversations about where, why and how revitalization and redevelopment should happen are essential to ensure our communities change in the right ways. 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 Riley Communities area.

A local area plan outlines a future vision for the area, provides guidance on what growth and change makes sense where, and includes development direction that residents, landowners, builders and developers, city planners and Councillors can commonly refer to as new development ideas are proposed by property owners and landowners in the area.

Learn more about Local Area Planning in Calgary.

The Riley Communities Local Area Planning project is one of the 42 multi-communities areas in the city. This project includes the communities of: Sunnyside, Hillhurst, West Hillhurst and Hounsfield Heights - Briar Hill.

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plan will fill gaps in communities/areas where no local plan currently exists and replace other plans that are largely outdated.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 a statutory plan adopted by Council as an Area Redevelopment Plan.

As part of the Riley Communities Local Area Plan, we will be working with interested or impacted groups and individuals in the plan area to create Heritage Guidelines. These will apply in areas of the Riley Communities that have concentrated groupings of heritage assets, sometimes known as character homes. Heritage assets are privately owned structures, typically constructed before 1945, that significantly retain their original form, scale, massing, window/door pattern and architectural details or materials.

The Guidelines will help ensure new development respects the historic character of existing homes and positively contributes to the ongoing historic nature of these areas. When the Guidelines are in place, any plans to build or renovate homes within the boundaries must meet the Heritage Guidelines.

The intent is that the Heritage Guidelines will address general characteristics of buildings rather than enforcing strict architectural rules. Although the design of new development needs to be sensitive to and respect existing heritage assets, the intent of the Heritage Guidelines is not to require new development to have a historic appearance. Instead, the Heritage Guidelines are written to encourage modern development that is highly contextual and echoes the past context established by existing heritage assets.

Communities in Calgary have sought these types of area-based heritage conservation tools for a long time. In July 2020, Council approved a series of conservation tools and incentives to offer that area-based approach. More information on the Heritage Guidelines will be released along with opportunities to provide feedback as the plan is further developed.

To help inform our understanding of community context & trends in the local area plan, we are also undertaking a mobility study. This study will review existing and anticipated transportation issues and opportunities in the Riley communities. In addition, this study will provide a long-term roadmap for the City to guide transportation improvement projects and investments to address issues and opportunities over the next several years. This page will be updated as the project develops.

Riley Local Area Planning Boundary Map

Riley Local Area Planning Boundary Map


Four phase process from winter 2022 - fall 2023

Riley Communities Local Area Plan: Project Timeline

  • Timeline item 1 - complete


    Phase 1: Spring 2022

    • Looking back at the past, understanding the present and envisioning the future of the area.
    • Share what you love about the community, what could be improved, and your vision for the future.
    • Apply to be a member of the working group
  • Timeline item 2 - active


    Phase 2: Fall / Winter 2022

    • Exploring where and how growth and change could happen in the area.
  • Timeline item 3 - incomplete


    Phase 3: Fall 2023

    • Refining the local area plan and confirming investment priorities.
  • Timeline item 4 - incomplete


    Phase 4: Winter 2024

    • Sharing the final local area plan and bringing it forward to Committee and Council for review and decision.
  • Timeline item 5 - active



    • Landowners decide if and when they want to develop or redevelop their land.
    • If a landowner decides they want to redevelop their land under a different land use district (zone), they must apply for a land use redesignation.
    • In some cases, The City (rather than a specific landowner) will rezone land. The City is more likely to rezone land if it is aligned with the long-term vision for growth and redevelopment such as in the Municipal Development Plan or local area plan.
    • City Council is the decision maker on all land use amendements.
  • Timeline item 6 - active



    • Local area plans are meant to be ‘living documents’ that may be amended and updated over time as the community changes and evolves and as conditions and circumstances in the area change.
    • City Council is the decision maker on all local area plan amendments.

Past Engagement


Click here to check out the Phase 1: ENVISION page for information from the first phase of engagement.

To view what we heard from the public in Phase 1 of engagement of the Riley Communities Local Area Plan, click on the links below.

Phase 2: EXPLORE

Click here to check out the Phase 2: EXPLORE page for information from the second phase of engagement.

The City defines engagement as: