Visualizing density in five Ontario neighbourhoods.



By 2031, 12 million people will live and work in the same land area currently occupied by 9 million people in the Greater Golden Horseshoe.  More people in the same space means living at a greater density is inevitable.


Density is...

a pilot project created by the Canadian Urban Institute to help planners, designers, elected officials, residents’ groups, and private sector builders design more complete communities and adapt existing ones over time. We want this site to be a contribution to the ongoing conversation about managing growth and building great communities in Ontario.



We chose 5 communities... 

to visualize what the built-form looks like in relation to density targets set out in the Provincial Growth Plan. The visuals and analysis in the 5 case studies also encourage users to look beyond buildings and consider the attributes that work with density to make complete communities. We chose 6 key drivers of complete communities to help us illustrate this.




calculates the density (residents and jobs per hectare) at the neighbourhood and block scale in 5 case studies. This approach can be easily replicated and used by municipalities, university courses, or volunteers to measure and explore density or undertake additional case studies to share on this website. The case studies could also be updated to assess each area's progress towards becoming a complete community.  


This website was created by the Canadian Urban Institute with support from the Ontario Growth Secretariat through the Places to Grow Implementation Fund.