Woodlea Character Statements

January 2017

City Administration is currently in the process of reviewing the comments received based on the last draft of the Woodlea Character Statements circulated in December 2016. Landowners within the Woodlea neighbourhood will be advised of future changes via mail. Updates and changes will also be posted on the website.

December 2016

Since the Woodlea Community Association AGM in October 2016, The City has reviewed landowner and resident comments on the Draft Woodlea Character Statements. Taking these comments into consideration, we have made some changes to the Character statements. Key changes include: 

Side yard setbacks

In the Chinese Market Garden Character Area, The City received some concerns that maintaining the existing large side yard setback standards will limit development opportunity on these smaller lots. The City is now proposing that the side yard setback on one side of the dwelling be a minimum of 1.5m from the property line (this is consistent with The City’s Land Use Bylaw for the R1 Residential (Low Density) District), and that on the opposing side, the first 1.5 metres of the home be setback a minimum of 2 metres from the property line, while the remainder of the home can be setback a minimum of 1.5 metres.  Therefore, the larger side yard setback on one side of the home for the first 1.5 metres of the home, will create the aesthetic illusion of consistent side yard setback standards with the other homes in the immediate street context. However, the loss of developable area on the lot will be minimized. Variances/ relaxations of the side yard setbacks in this area will not be considered.  

Front yard driveways

While the vast majority of homes within Woodlea contain driveways accessible by a rear lane, there are some areas that predominantly have front yard access which have become part of the character of these streets. For this reason:

  • Properties on the west side of 44 Avenue between 51 Street and 53 Street, and
  • Properties along 53 Street Crescent, 5335 45 Avenue, 5337 45 Avenue, and 5339 45 Avenue all within the Central Woodlea (formerly South Woodlea) Character Area

 will be permitted to have front yard access.


The City also received a comment regarding grading and its impact on the walkability on the Woodlea neighbourhood. While no changes regarding grading were made to the updated Character Statements, The City invites any further comments regarding the potential impact of grading on the Neighbourhood for further consideration.

Read the updated version of the Character Statements for the Woodlea Neighbourhood (pdf) .

If you have any comments regarding the Draft Woodlea Character Statements please fill out a Woodlea Comment Sheet (pdf)  and return it to The City via one of the options listed on the comment sheet.

What are Character Statements?

Character Statements are a planning tool that helps us define and maintain what makes a specific geographic area unique. While all neighbourhoods contain the same basic elements, which consist of individual properties and public infrastructure (i.e. streets, sidewalks, lighting, and utilities), the relationship and design of these basic elements is what establishes the character of a neighbourhood. 

Character Statements are in addition to the regulations and standards currently contained in the Land Use Bylaw and the Neighbourhood Planning & Design Standards 2013 (pdf). A list of the existing regulations and standards can be found here: Existing Regulations and Standards (pdf)

Why have Character Statements?

When redevelopment of private property or public infrastructure occurs, concerns over losing the character of a neighbourhood are often raised. Character Statements define the character of a specific geographic area by capturing the design elements that make that area different from other areas. This planning tool therefore provides additional guidance for the redevelopment process. 

Who needs Character Statements?

Character Statements are not necessary for every neighbourhood in Red Deer. They are useful for specific geographic areas that meet the following criteria:

  • They contain a combination of elements that together make an area unique or special or
  • The character is designed to guide a redeveloping area intentionally

Each Character Statement contains the following information which serves to define the overall characteristics of the area:

  • Character Statement Area Map
  • Context and history
  • Common forms and scale of buildings
  • Common building materials
  • Other common elements
  • Recommended design elements

Have questions?


Christi Fidek
Senior Planner
The City of Red Deer


Kim Fils-Aime
The City of Red Deer