The Kensington Road NW main street stretches from Crowchild Trail to 10 Street NW through one of Calgary's oldest communities, West Hillhurst.
West Hillhurst was annexed by the City in 1907. The area saw significant housing development after the Second World War. Once part of Calgary's streetcar system, Kensington Road is now home to many well established businesses and unique shops, and has become a destination for both local residents and visitors. The population in West Hillhurst has increased slightly in the past few years and is anticipated to grow more as the community accommodates new commercial and residential developments.
Comments were compiled from the Main Streets public engagement activities which took place from November 2014 through May 2015. The top issues, opportunities and outcomes were ranked in order of consensus and ratings from citizens. This input will be analyzed to inform the planning strategy for each main street.
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Top comments (ranked in order of citizen rating)
- Enhance streetscape/pedestrian environment through redevelopment of North side of street
- Live-work on both sides of Kensington Road NW
- Small, cohesive commercial areas - yoga studios, coffee shops, restaurants etc.
- Include 19th Street as part of the main street
- Poor pedestrian experience along Kensington Road NW from 14th Street to Crowchild Trail
- Bike connectivity to 14th Street
- High quality public realm elements
- Laneway housing
- Need more commercial services and businesses
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The Main Streets team and experts from across The City are reviewing the public input provided. We are also discussing main street growth with industry and economic experts to inform the Main Streets planning strategy.
Once this information is compiled we will report back to you on what we've learned and how the input provided has influenced the Main Streets planning strategy. Subscribe to receive email updates and invites to future events.
Evaluation and analysis
By analysing local input and economic information, the Main Streets team will start evaluating what policy, land use or other planning options would benefit Calgary's main streets.
By reviewing local statistics, the Main Streets team will consider how past population, employment and transportation trends apply to the future Calgary's main streets.
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We are currently working with economic research experts and industry partners to understand what the market demand, opportunities and challenges are for development in main street areas.
Once this information is compiled we will report back to you on what we've learned. Subscribe to receive email updates and invites to future events.
In addition to public engagement and economic research about the area, the Main Streets team will review the Hillhurst/Sunnyside area redevelopment plan and related planning documentation in the evaluation and analysis phase of the program.
The Kensington Road NW main street runs east to west from 10 Street NW to Crowchild Trail NW and spans the communities of Hillhurst and West Hillhurst.
The potential of this area was largely unrecognized until the early 1900s, when the land was annexed by The City of Calgary. The available lots, location, and presence of a street car line and water and sanitation service, made Kensington Road NW highly attractive to settlers.
Residential development mainly occurred along the west side. The diversity and scale of architectural buildings along Kensington Road NW reflects the cultural and economic positions of early settlers. Following the Second World War, many of the earliest residences were demolished and replaced with more modern styles, yet the scale and lot placement of homes remained largely intact. Low-rise apartment blocks also emerged during this time bringing more people to the area.
The earliest commercial blocks were located on the east side of Kensington Road NW, between 10 Street NW and 14 Street NW and contained buildings one to two storeys in height with minimal setback from the street and often with residential suites above. Notable historic buildings that still exist today are the King George Masonic Hall (1926) and the Plaza Theatre (1928).