What You Need To Know About Urban Sprawl In Winnipeg

How the continuous sprawl of developments in the city contributes to climate change and influences your health negatively, and an alternative solution to the problem.

As Canadians, we pride ourselves on our diversity. It stems from the rich cultures of millions of immigrants who are part of our communities.

A residential area in Winnipeg with downtown in the horizon | Photo source: Brydon McCluskey

In Winnipeg, we continue to diversify and grow the city by welcoming new Manitobans from across Canada and the world. Diversification and a growing population is of course beneficial, bringing economic advantages and new innovation to various industries in our province. But did you know that a growing population can result in urban sprawl which is detrimental to our society?

Now let’s be clear with one thing - a growing population is not what’s harmful. Rather, what’s harmful is the way our communities are being built.

What Is Urban Sprawl?

Urban sprawl is when cities and communities spread into undeveloped areas such as farms, wildlands and other green spaces to build new housing and buildings. This puts wildlife habitats and species at risk, and it leaves us with less green space.

The reason for the continuing sprawl? Low-density or single-detached houses. Rather than rebuilding and redeveloping sites closer to downtown, it’s cheaper to produce new houses in areas farther from the city’s core.

A Strong Jab To The Environment And Your Health

When the city grows outward, the need for more vehicles and oil consumption increases. Even though 47.5 per cent of jobs in Winnipeg are within five kilometres of city hall, less and less people choose to live in this high-density employment area. No wonder vehicles cause approximately one-third of our city’s gas emissions. Gas emissions from these cars continue to harm our environment and our health, and makes it harder to fight climate change.

According to a report by our country’s top doctor, Dr. Theresa Tam, urban sprawl promotes a sedentary lifestyle. Because of the increase in time spent driving, people have easier access to unhealthy food, and participate in fewer physical activities which leads to obesity.

Infill Developments: A Solution To Urban Sprawl

Infill housing developments can help stop further urban crawl in Winnipeg. Instead of building in undeveloped areas, infill land developers build in mature neighbourhoods. These neighbourhoods are typically close to downtown. This gives the opportunity for more people to choose walking, biking and using public transportation to get where they need to go, such as work and shopping, which leads to less gas emissions and a healthier lifestyle.

A medium-density home located at 584 Gertrude by Paragon Design Build

One type of home that infill developers build in mature neighbourhoods are medium-density homes. These homes house more families in a single lot compared to a single detached house.

Paragon Design Build is a leading infill developer in Winnipeg dedicated to rejuvenating Winnipeg’s core. Developing properties in these areas may be more expensive than building farther from downtown but we are committed to making Winnipeg more sustainable and healthy today and for many years to come.

Head over to RentWinnipeg.com to learn more about our infill builds in the city.

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