CHBA Calgary Region

UDI-Calgary

April 16, 2009 08:00 ET

Calgarians Aspire to Single Family Home Ownership

Yet ready to make tradeoffs for sustainability

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - April 16, 2009) - 72% of Calgarians and those living in the Calgary area want to live in a single family home, and an even greater number (79%) hope their children will be able to do the same. Those are key findings in a survey conducted by NRG Research Group-Alberta (NRG) for the Canadian Home Builders Association - Calgary Region (CHBA) and the Urban Development Institute Calgary (UDI).

"A house with a yard is what most people want," says Mr. Bruce Cameron, NRG Senior Vice President and Managing Director. "It's what their parents wanted and it's what they want for their kids." And they want a garage too. The survey shows that 67% of Calgary households have two or more cars and 83% of those people surveyed believe Calgarians will use their cars for most of their transportation needs in the next 10-20 years.

"The survey confirms that as we move forward with our position on Plan It Calgary, we are in tune with what Calgarians want," says Mr. Dennis Little, Chair of the CHBA/UDI Plan It Response Committee. "One of the things that make Calgary such a great place is that most of us can live in a single family home. It's part of our success and it's important we don't limit that choice for people. Calgarians must have more time to understand how Plan It would change our city, our quality of life and how it impacts Calgary's economic prosperity."

The NRG survey also shows that Calgarians are ready to take steps towards sustainability. 73% support requiring high density housing near LRT stations and 57% support encouraging more high density housing in their own communities. "As Calgarians have indicated, multi-family options are an important and welcome part of a growing city," says Mr. Little. "We absolutely agree and simply ask the City to leave the choice up to individual citizens who can, and should, make the decision on the type of housing and where to live for themselves."

"Although people support concepts like densification and transit oriented development, they are divided on some key issues," says Mr. Cameron. Only half of those surveyed support restricting development at the edge of the city to encourage high density housing in their own community. 52% disagree with restricting single family housing to encourage more multi-family development.

"Calgarians are split on the issues and that is why we strongly suggest moving forward with a balanced approach," says Mr. Little. "We can't continue business as usual, but Calgarians need to first understand the detailed Plan It targets which we believe are unrealistic. The Plan It population distribution and unit type targets need to be changed to truly reflect the housing choices that Calgarians overwhelmingly demonstrate are what they want for themselves and their families."

The complete CHBA/UDI response to Plan It will be available Friday April 17 at www.chbacalgary.com and www.udicalgary.com.

A representative cross-section of 800 residents of Calgary and the surrounding area were surveyed March 12 - 22, 2009. A survey of this size is accurate to within +/- 3.5 percept 19 times out of 20.

About NRG Research Group

NRG Research Group is a private national market research and strategic planning company with more than 25 years of experience in qualitative and quantitative research in strategic communications. NRG Research Group consultants have designed and managed thousands of quantitative and qualitative research projects, including projects with local, provincial, national, and international scope.

About the CHBA Calgary Region and UDI-Calgary

CHBA Calgary is a 700 plus member-company association representing the thousands of individuals employed by single and multi-family builders, renovators, land developers, trades, suppliers and general professionals that create housing in our City.

UDI - Calgary represents over 150 member companies involved in creating residential communities throughout Calgary.

For more information please visit www.chbacalgary.com and www.udicalgary.com.

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