Winnipeg’s population is expected to grow by 200,000 over the next 20 years. How can it grow in the best way possible?

The City wants to determine the best places in the city to accommodate increased population and housing growth – the best mix of new housing will include a combination of downtown, infill, and new suburban sites. We plan on studying all of the different areas that can accommodate major growth and assign them different priorities. These priorities will then be used to develop a preferred growth scenario that will be embedded as policy in the OurWinnipeg Review.

The goals of this study are to:

  • Facilitate the responsible management of land within the City of Winnipeg;
  • Understand the opportunities and constraints of all potential residential and mixed use growth areas;
  • Maximize the City’s return on the investments it will need to make to accommodate growth over the next 20 years;
  • Leverage growth to achieve city-wide goals and objectives;
  • Ensure that the updated OurWinnipeg will be based on sound data and analysis, and;
  • Achieve cross-departmental integration.

This project will be divided into three phases:

  • Phase 1 Creation of the Evaluation Criteria – develop weighted evaluation criteria to prioritize growth areas. Evaluation criteria will be developed using data and analysis, and input from the public.
  • Phase 2 Residential Lands Evaluation – all study areas (“transformative areas”) will be analyzed according to the criteria established in Phase 1.
  • Phase 3 Growth Scenarios and Recommendations for Implementation – create multiple growth scenarios informed by the study area priorities, leading to the selection of a preferred growth scenario that will be embedded into the OurWinnipeg Review. The final recommendations will include how to implement the preferred growth scenario.

Residential Growth Study timeline

PDF version of the Residential Growth Study timeline

Engage

The first step in this process is to develop a set of criteria that will be used to analyze all potential growth areas. The criteria will allow for a consistent comparison of the City’s areas to determine where the City should prioritize residential growth.

Thank you to everyone who participated in the public survey. We received over 500 responses, which will help us develop the various criteria to be used in the Residential Lands Evaluation in Phase 2. A report summarizing the residential lands evaluation will be presented in fall 2018, and growth scenarios based on the criteria and residential lands evaluation will be presented for further input in winter 2019.

Later on in the process, we will be asking for your input on growth scenarios.

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Which study areas are being considered?

Study areas will be based on Transformative Areas as identified in OurWinnipeg and the Complete Communities Direction Strategy. These are areas that Complete Communities describes as having the best opportunities to accommodate growth and change. These include different areas of the Downtown as well as designated and potential Corridors, New and Emerging Communities (designated new suburban areas), and Major Redevelopment Sites (large infill sites).

What criteria will be used to prioritize the different study areas?

Phase 1 will determine which criteria will be used to prioritize different study areas and how they should be weighted. Some of the criteria we are asking for input on include: Market Readiness, Access to Transit, City-Funded Costs, and Proximity to Destinations like jobs, shopping, and parks. Please provide your input on those criteria and other suggestions through the Phase 1 public survey.

Development of criteria will consider both mature and new neighbourhoods.

What will you do once you have determined priority areas?

After the study areas are prioritized, the City will consider different ways it can grow by developing multiple growth scenarios. It will then consult on these different growth scenarios, leading to the selection of a preferred scenario. This preferred scenario will prescribe how the City should grow over the next 20 years.

A key outcome of this work will describe how the City can best implement this preferred growth scenario, including the investments it will need to make to achieve this scenario and the expected timing.

What are the limitations of this exercise?

The nature of this study is to compare the advantages and disadvantages of different sites that can accommodate residential growth. While there may be an opportunity to speak to site design considerations at a high level, the main intent is discuss residential growth on the site, rather than design.

How can I participate?

There are two opportunities planned for public engagement. The first is an online survey intended to help weight different potential prioritization criteria during Phase 1. There will then be an opportunity to provide input on the Phase 3 growth scenarios.

Is the development industry being consulted in this work?

The City recognizes the land development industry as a key city-building partner with invaluable expertise in this matter. The project team will conduct workshops with the industry during Phases 1 and 3 of this work.

How does this relate to the City’s concurrent Residential Infill Strategy?

The Residential Infill Strategy is focusing on housing in “areas of stability”, and the Housing Growth Strategy is focused on “transformative areas”. Although related, these two studies are focused on housing in different types of neighbourhoods.

Is there a consultant working on this project?

In November 2017, the City issued a Request for Proposal for Professional Consulting Services for an OurWinnipeg Framework for Residential Growth. A consulting team led by IBI Group Professional Services (Canada) Inc. was deemed to have submitted the most advantageous bid to the City as per the terms of the RFP and a contract was awarded to them in February 2018.