Blanket Rezoning in Calgary, Passed: How it Effects Housing

by | Jun 1, 2024

Calgary Council Approves Blanket Rezoning

    The City Councillors have recently approved, by a 9-6 vote, blanket rezoning in Calgary. An initiative aimed at addressing the housing crisis by increasing the diversity and supply of residential properties. The communities of Calgary are about to undergo a major transformation. A change that will have a significant impact on both home purchasers and real estate agents. Making educated decisions in our frequently shifting real estate market requires knowledge of these new zoning regulations.

    By staying up-to-date and proactive, you can leverage these changes to your advantage to make the most of the latest changes coming to Calgary.

A single detached home; subject to blanket rezoning in Calgary following City Council Approval

What Variations in Blanket Zoning Have Been Approved?

    The way the city views urban growth has changed significantly with the recent blanket zoning amendments. On May 14, 2024, the Calgary City Council approved an amendment that aims to address the housing crisis in the city. It’s designed to encourage more varied housing options in every community in a single sweeping campaign.

Understanding Blanket Rezoning

    Blanket zoning is a city-wide policy that redefines the default zoning regulations for residential properties. Under this new policy, the default zoning district for residential areas will be changed to Residential – Grade-Oriented (R-CG). This means that a variety of housing types are now permitted on any residential lot previously zoned for single-family homes​. This still includes single-detached houses, but now opens those lots up to semi-detached houses, duplexes, row homes, and townhouse developments. 

Specific Citywide Changes Approved

    The blanket zoning initiative includes several specific changes aimed at increasing housing diversity and density:

    1. New Housing Types:

    The new R-CG residential zoning allows for multiple housing types on previously single-family zoned lots. This change is being promoted as a solution to increase the availability of affordable housing options for Calgary residents​​.

    2. Secondary and Backyard Suites:

    Homeowners across the city now have the option to add both secondary suites and backyard suites to their properties. This presumes they undergo the appropriate development permit processes. This change aims to maximize the use of residential lots and provide more flexible living arrangements​.

    3. Parking Requirements:

    The new regulations remove parking requirements for backyard suites, making for easier and more cost-effective additions to existing properties​​.

    4. Contextual Single-Detached Dwellings:

    The zoning changes also include provisions to ensure that new developments fit within the existing neighbourhood context, maintaining the character and aesthetic of communities​.

    See if your property is effected by checking the City of Calgary interactive maps here: City of Calgary Rezoning Map

City of Calgary Rezoning Map; Showing Areas Effected by the New R-CG Zoning

Objectives and Benefits of a Successful Rezoning Plan

    Addressing Calgarians’ increasing housing demands is the main objective of these broad rezoning amendments. The city wants to:

    Increase Housing Supply: The changes are expected to significantly boost the number of available housing units, helping to meet demand and improve affordability across the city​.

    Boost Diversity in the Community: With a broader range of housing types, communities can become more inclusive and diverse, offering various living options for different family sizes and income levels​​.

    Promote Sustainable Development: The new zoning encourages the efficient use of land and resources, supporting Calgary’s sustainability goals by promoting higher density living and reducing urban sprawl​.

    For Calgarians both already in and about to enter the real estate market, these extensive zoning revisions are to be acknowledged as a turning point. Property rezoned creates the conditions for a more vibrant, inclusive, and environmentally friendly city. Real estate brokers, sellers, and home purchasers must be aware of and able to adjust to the changing market when these new rules take effect.

Effect on Home Owners and Buyers

    Increased Housing Options

    The wider range of housing alternatives offered is one of the zoning regulations’ most noticeable consequences. Beyond conventional single-family homes, home buyers will have more options, including:

    Rowhouses and Townhomes:

    Offering private outdoor space together with a more communal atmosphere, these housing options provide a compromise between single-family homes and apartment living. Families and young professionals looking for spacious, reasonably priced living quarters may find this very appealing.

    Secondary and Backyard Suites:

    Addition of backyard and supplementary suites offers flexibility for larger family or possible rental income. Through the balancing of mortgage expenses with rental revenue, this can increase accessibility and affordability of homeownership.

    Impact on Property Values
    The rezoning changes are expected to influence property values in various ways:

    Potential Increases:

    The additional density permitted may cause properties with redevelopment potential into multi-unit dwellings to appreciate in value. The fact that investors and developers are showing more interest in these assets may increase demand.

    Stabilization of Prices:

    The implementation of blanket rezoning in Calgary seeks to stabilize the market and lower the cost of housing by expanding the supply of homes generally. This might slow down the quick rise in prices and facilitate more people joining the property market.

    Community Relations
    The character of many neighbourhoods will shift as a result of the zoning changes:

    Increased Density:

    Larger population bases can result in more thriving communities with better services and amenities. Problems like more traffic and a need for parking, though, can also arise.

    Diverse Communities:

    Different housing options will encourage variety in neighbourhoods by allowing for a range of family sizes, ages, and financial situations. Communities can become more inclusive, and their social fabric can strengthen as a result.

    Find the latest developments that have been approved in your community here:

    Benefits for Home Buyers
    The new zoning regulations offer several potential benefits for home buyers:


    Buyers should be able to discover homes that meet their budgets as the market becomes more cheap with more housing alternatives and availability.


    Addition of auxiliary and backyard suites gives homeowners options for future need, such housing extended family or generating rental money.

    Investment Opportunities:

    Properties with redevelopment potential offer attractive investment opportunities, whether for personal use or for rental income​.

    By understanding these impacts, home buyers can better navigate the market and take advantage of the opportunities presented by the new zoning changes.

Key Areas Affected by Rezoning Across the City of Calgary

    Depending on their present land use, density, and infrastructure, Calgary’s blanket zoning changes will have varying speeds in which effects begin to take hold of different communities. Real estate agents, homebuyers, and homeowners can all foresee and adjust to the changes by knowing these localized effects.
    High Demand Neighbourhoods

    Communities near downtown, main transit lines, and amenities are probably going to see more substantial changes. Redevelopment into multi-unit housing is appealing in these locations since they are already desirable and have higher property values. The increased density can lead to more vibrant communities but also brings challenges such as traffic and parking management.

    Inner-City Areas:

    Inner-city areas like Beltline, Kensington, and Inglewood are expected to see an an increase in development. These locations are top picks for higher-density housing because of their closeness to downtown and cultural attractions.

    Sub-Urban Neighbourhoods

    Comparatively speaking to inner-city neighbourhoods, suburban communities with a high proportion of single-family houses may transform more slowly. However, these areas will still see changes as the rezoning allows for more diverse housing types. This potentially alters the traditional suburban landscape over a longer time frame​.

    Family-Oriented Communities:

    As rowhouses and duplexes become more common in suburban communities like Tuscany, Signal Hill, and Evergreen, families and young professionals seeking reasonably priced, large living quarters will have more possibilities.

    Areas with Existing Local Area Plans

    Communities that have completed Local Area Plans (LAPs) will be closely monitored to ensure the new zoning aligns with the community’s vision and needs. These places could see a more deliberate and staged development that strikes a balance between new homes and community involvement and infrastructure capabilities.

    Infrastructure Challenges

    More profound effects could be felt in neighbourhoods that are already dealing with infrastructural limitations, including little parking or inadequate road capacity. Although the city intends to track and deal with these problems, locals may experience the consequences more directly when new projects raise population density and put a pressure on available resources.

    Developing Communities:

    Rapidly growing areas like Mahogany and Seton will require meticulous planning to guarantee that infrastructure keeps up with new home projects, solving issues with traffic, amenities, and public services.

    By understanding the specific impacts on different neighbourhoods, stakeholders can better prepare and respond to the changes brought by the new zoning bylaws.
A map showing a local single family home in Calgary; subject to blanket rezoning under the new bylaw.

How Can The Calgary Home Inspector Corp. Help? 

    With the increased variety of housing types now permitted under the new zoning laws, our comprehensive home inspection services are more crucial than ever. We perform thorough inspections for all kinds of residential properties, including townhouses, row houses, single-detached homes, and multi-unit complexes. To make sure you fully understand the state of the property, our inspection report covers plumbing, electrical systems, structural integrity, and more.
    Specialized Services for New Developments

    The rezoning changes bring opportunities for new developments and renovations. We offer specialized inspection services for:

    New Construction:

    We conduct phased new construction inspections during the building process to ensure the latest developments are keeping up with modern standards. This helps developers and buyers avoid costly mistakes by ensuring safety and quality​ of the build.

    Secondary and Backyard Suites:

    Our inspections cover the addition of secondary suites and backyard suites, ensuring they meet all regulatory requirements and are safe for occupancy. Misguided DIY projects are bound to be more frequent creating a greater need for thorough inspections. 

    Expert Advice and Consultation

    For Home Buyers:

    We help buyers assess the potential of properties under the new zoning regulations, advising on possible renovations, additions, and their impact on property value and usability.

    For Sellers:

    We assist sellers in preparing their properties for the market, highlighting features that align with the new zoning laws and could attract more buyers. Our pre-listing home inspections help identify and address any issues before listing​.

    For Real Estate Professionals:

    Together with real estate agents, we offer dependable home inspection services to mutual clients, so they have all the information they need to make informed decisions about buying or selling. Our knowledge helps agents establish credibility and trust among their clients.

Additional Resources

1. City of Calgary Rezoning Information:

The City of Calgary’s Rezoning for Housing page provides comprehensive information on the new zoning regulations, including interactive maps to check the proposed zoning for specific addresses​​.

2. Housing Strategy Documents:

Review the “Home is Here: The City of Calgary’s Housing Strategy 2024-2030” for detailed insights into the city’s long-term housing plans and objectives. This document outlines the goals and expected outcomes of the zoning changes​.​

3. Community Engagement Reports:

The LiveWire Calgary reports feedback from public hearing, provides the perspective of community concerns and support for the rezoning initiative. This can help you understand the broader community sentiment.

4. Professional Advice and Services:

Consult with real estate professionals, urban planners, and home service experts to get tailored advice and services that align with the new zoning regulations. Most importantly, utilize the specialized services of your Calgary Home Inspectors to help you navigate these changes effectively​.