Infill Homes, a Solution to Historic Urban Design

Infill Homes, a Solution to Historic Urban Design

Do you ever wonder why one community may look and feel completely different from another? Why its design doesn’t match with the rest of the city? The answer can usually be found in the history of urban planning and city design trends. For centuries, a rigid grid system was the most popular design for cities. A straightforward and efficient system, that largely ignored the typography of an area, and in Western Canada – was built to set the stage for the Canadian Pacific Railway. You can see this design clearly in Calgary’s oldest communities, such as Inglewood, Bridgeland and the downtown area. Although this design has advantages, after the industrial revolution some problems arose. With heavy industry throughout the city, many cities were facing terrible air pollution, safety and sanitation issues. For those who wanted to live near the city, but with the country experience, new designs incorporated ideas from Ebenezer Howard’s Garden City, where the residential area was separate from the business and industrial region of the town, and was characterized by prestigious large green spaces, pathways and large lots and lawns. The areas around and including Mount Royal were originally ‘garden cities’. A few more designs and re-designs later, and the suburb was born. With its inclusive features, limited vehicle entry points and distance from city centre. The suburbs took cities by storm. We now know that suburbs pose problems for cities. The expense of connecting these distant residential areas to utilities and roads and maintaining these utilities for long distances is costly. Even more modern suburbs in some cases, have been designed with too many parks...