Doing Density Right: A conversation about the future of our city

Media Release

For Immediate Release

Doing Density Right

Happy City partnering with St. John’s Board of Trade and the Canadian Home Builders’ Association – NL to talk about the future of St. John’s

St. John’s is changing – growing and, quite likely, getting more dense. What will that mean for the city? Over the next three weeks, people are going to talk about it. In partnership with the St. John’s Board of Trade and the Canadian Homebuilders’ Association – NL, Happy City St. John’s is launching a conversation between citizens and the private sector about how to do density right.

Happy City and its partners have launched an online survey, available at, with a series of questions about how people in St. John’s envision a denser city. The results will be presented at a series of three evenings focused on different parts of the city

  • East End : Tuesday, December 2nd, 7-9 PM, Wedgewood Park Community Centre
  • West End: Wednesday, December 3rd, 7-9 PM, Cowan Heights United Church
  • Centre City: Thursday, December 4th, 7-9 PM, Wesley United Church

These evenings will feature a panel discussion with leaders from the development community, a presentation of ideas for density from around Canada and the world, and a chance for attendees to draw out their own ideas. Happy City will pull together the results into a summary document.  “The private sector plays a huge role in the shape of our city,” says Josh Smee, Chair of the Happy City Board of Directors, “so it’s very exciting to have a chance to connect them with the many great ideas the people of St. John’s have about how a denser city might look, work, and feel.”

St. John’s Board of Trade Chair Sharon Horan says as the city continues to grow, we really have to start thinking about more density and less sprawl. “Complete communities include things like corner stores, day care centres and coffee shops, which are good for residents and the business community,” says Horan. “If we are going to build more dense neighbourhoods, it is important that it is done right, and citizens and businesspeople have a say in how our city looks in the future.”

“The common thread running through municipal planning success stories is the creation of partnerships between the private sector, government and community groups working towards a common goal, and the residential construction industry understands that,” says Victoria Belbin, CEO of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association – Newfoundland and Labrador.  “Ultimately, we believe the best way to achieve effective planning policies is by advancing inventive solutions for offering housing choice and involving builders and developers who are critical to creating sustainable communities people want to live in.”


For more information or to schedule interviews, contact:

Josh Smee
Chair, Happy City
(709) 763-5216
Victoria Belbin
(709) 753-2000
Kristina George
Communications & Advocacy Specialist
St. John’s Board of Trade
(709) 726-2961