5 River Communities in Calgary You’ll Love, and Why
- January 15, 2019
- By Cody Battershill
Top 5 Riverside Communities in Calgary, AB
Calgary’s rivers are a highlight not only for leisure and recreation, but for living as well!
A handful of central communities (and a few suburban) are lucky to be located along the Bow and Elbow Rivers, like Altadore, for example, a community which is known as one of the most desirable in the inner city (and for good reason).
That’s because living near a river in Calgary offers what nothing else can in an otherwise “waterless” city with no natural lakes: convenient access to riverside parks and pathways.
There’s just something about water that most of us are drawn to, especially when it comes to owning waterside real estate in some capacity or another.
Calgary River Parks & Pathways
Calgary’s known for both its pathways and parks, actually, many of which are found riverside.
The city has the most extensive urban pathway / bikeway network in North America and is not low on parks by any means; many of these parks connect to the rivers via pathways.
About 400km of the 905km of Calgary’s pathways are maintained year-round (many which are riverside), providing Calgarians with a means of getting to and from work no matter the weather.
Many Calgarians choose to live in a river community for obvious reasons, one being easy access to work downtown without having to drive.
What’s Your Goal?
You might be a downtown worker looking to live, work and play closer to home.
You might be a river enthusiast who uses Calgary’s river pathways on the daily.
You could be looking for a great community for you and your family to grow and making lasting memories.
Perhaps you’re something else.
But if you’re thinking about buying a home in a riverside community in Calgary for whatever reason, here’s a few that may spark your interest:
This family-oriented community has it all: quiet streets, public transportation, shopping amenities, riverside parks / pathways and even a business improvement area with over 130 businesses (Marda Loop) ready to serve you!
On the east side of Altadore you’ll find four riverside parks with interconnecting pathways:
- Aldatore Park
- River Park
- Sandy Beach Park
- Riverdale Park
Easily reach the river by jaunting down a pathway. There’s paved ones and others that are dirty which run through the thick of the bush but with wooden stairs to help you along your way. These dirt ones can get slippery when its wet, so watch out!
Stunning luxury infill developments are another reason why Altadore’s popularity as a river community in Calgary continues to grow without bounds. Today, many post-war bungalows originally built in the area have been replaced with new custom-built homes from some of Calgary’s best builders, revitalizing the streetscapes and attracting families from all walks of life.
East Village (EV) is Calgary’s up-and-coming crown jewel. It’s a festival / cultural hub still under development with several recently completed projects including condos, eateries and public facilities that are second to none like the New Central Library and National Music Centre.
This once shanty part of town is now a vibrant and eclectic riverside community in Calgary. The pathway on the Bow River’s south embankment, RiverWalk, has gone through some major renovations over the past several years.
Part of those upgrades were the new St. Patrick’s Island and bridge which connects EV residents with the beautiful and recently completed park island. Here you’ll find:
- A fishing cove
- Children’s playgrounds
- Wooded areas with meandering paved pathways
- Lowland channel with boardwalk over naturalized wetlands
- A confluence plaza with an amphitheatre
- Viewpoints in various locations
- Calgary Zoo
On the far east side of St. Patrick’s Island there’s a bridge leads south to Inglewood, another vibrant inner city community with endless restaurants, shops and entertainment for you to discover.
The Bow River pathways don’t end there either. You can ride all the way to the southeast end of the city if you’d like. Or, at least to Fish Creek Provincial Park, which is one of the largest urban parks in Canada.
Here you’ll find even more pathways (paved and dirt) as well as Sikome Lake, a favourite summer destination of many locals looking for a dip when it gets hot outside.
It doesn’t get anymore urban than Eau Claire. Located in the heart of downtown, this riverside community in Calgary is home to several condo developments that look out onto the Bow River’s southern embankment (RiverWalk).
Eau Claire real estate is some of the most expensive in the city on a comparative basis for its location alone. Throw in the luxury developments that tend to cover the downtown community, and you have one of the most exclusive multi-family-only neighbourhoods in the city.
With that being said, you get what you pay for, like the opportunity to live a fully-fledged walkable lifestyle just steps away from:
- Prince’s Island Park
- Eau Claire Park
- Eau Claire Market
- East Village
- St. Patrick’s Island
- Kensington Business Revitalization Zone
… and quite possibly the office in the downtown if you work nearby (like many residents do in Eau Claire).
But really, the highlight of living in this riverside community in Calgary is Prince’s Island Park. It’s the centre-piece of activities and events in the downtown core, where you’ll find:
- Festivals (Folk Music Festival, Afrikadey! + more)
- Picnic areas
- Flower gardens
- Seasonal washrooms
- Seasonal restaurant (River Café)
This park is the ultimate reprieve from the concrete jungle of downtown, especially in the spring and summer. Love it! It’s located directly in front of Eau Claire Market, another amenity hotspot for neighbourhood residents and visitors alike.
Mission’s high density residential profile of mostly condo buildings provides many options when considering a move there. Urbanites both young and old flock to Mission for its incredible walkability, with the amenities of the 4th Street Business Improvement Area and the paved pathways of the Elbow River just steps away from home.
On the southeast part of the community there’s a large bed of rocks sticking out of the Bow River that make for a great lounging / dogwalk area during the spring and summer. Some people even set up lawnchairs here and enjoy the sounds of the river rushing by, while others use it to set their raft adrift southward towards Stanley Park (and eventually the Glenmore Reservoir).
Another huge bonus of living in Mission: quick-and-easy access to Repsol Sport Centre, one of Calgary’s best indoor recreation centres. This massive facility is situated inside Lindsay Park, a beautiful green space with lush trees and meandering pathways great for walking the dog or having a picnic.
Heading south along the Elbow River pathways from Mission you’ll reach another outstanding inner city park called Stanley Park, which brings us to our next best river community in Calgary.
Park Hill / Stanley Park
Park Hill / Stanley Park is an exclusive community in Calgary but with a surprisingly diverse real estate portfolio. Million-dollar infills line the hill ridges while more affordable condominiums and townhomes found just a few minutes’ walk from the river.
Park Hill’s riverfront is all located in the popular Stanley Park. In the spring and summer, this park a hotbed for groups of friends and families looking to enjoy a picnic, swim in the pool or perhaps play some outdoor games.
The wading pool makes it a great destination for families with young children who want to enjoy the summer heat but have to take care of the kids.
All that Stanley Park has to offer community residents is reachable on foot within a few short minutes. That includes:
- Sports field
- Tennis courts
- Playground areas
- Paved pathways
- BBQ stands and picnis areas
- Seasonal washrooms / water fountains
- Outdoor swimming pool and wading pool
- Lawn bowling facility
- Toboggan hill
It’s hard to see why anyone wouldn’t enjoy living in this river community in Calgary.
Calgary Lake Homes
If you're thinking about making a move to a river community in Calgary, a lake home might also interest you:
Questions about River Communities in Calgary?
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Call me anytime at 403-370-4180 or send a message below for a quick response. I am looking forward to helping you accomplish your real estate goals!
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