Everyone has their own view on condominium development. Some love the big city feel they provide and the all-inclusive perks of living there, while others think that the density they usually come with are too much and are shocked by why anyone would ever pay condo fees.
However, something to consider when forming an opinion, whether you are living in, near, or just passing a condominium development, is the following:
They are usually much better for the environment than freehold housing.
Condominiums usually pick up the management structure that they do thanks to the fact that there are many units located on a relatively small piece of land in which amenities are shared. These could be internal roads between townhouse rows, roofing, hallways in a high-rise or even a furnace. This means that the footprint of the structures themselves is usually much smaller than if you were to have the same number of units laid out as freehold houses.
This way, more land can be preserved, and we can minimize the sprawl that an urban center would otherwise have. This land can be used for farming and allowing for more crops to be local and not have to travel long distances to get there, or just be left as green space that provides recreation opportunities and biodiversity.
Apart from having a smaller physical footprint on the land that they are located on, there are some other features of condominiums living that makes it a better choice from an environmental point of view than freehold housing.
1. Better Alternative Transportation Opportunities
We all know that having multiple cars per household is not very eco-friendly, however, it can be a necessity when you living in a sprawling subdivision. In areas with greater densities, like many condo developments, it makes more sense for companies and governments to invest in alternative transportation infrastructure. Examples are bus lines, light rapid transit lines, bike lanes, or even car-share programs. Once you have more density, not only is it more likely that the service you are trying to access is available nearby, be that a bank, movie theatre, or grocery store, but you also have a greater population to support putting in “shared” transport options.
2. Communal Spaces
When your unit is not the size of a house, sometimes you miss out on opportunities to have a barbeque, host a bigger get together, or even have a garden. Thankfully, most condos now create communal spaces which residents share, like party rooms, pools, and even gardens. Most would not use these spaces day to day anyway and having the chance to use them when you need them means that you don’t have to have as big of a unit as you previously thought, saving space, money, and the environment.
3. Less Traffic
No one likes traffic, feeling like they are just drowning in smog and wasting their time. But rivers worth of idling cars are no good for the environment either! When more people live centrally and within the city, which means that there is less of the “into the city” and “out of the city” commute that happens around business hours starting and ending. When people already live close to where they work, they can either decrease the length of their drive or just do something else completely like a walk, bike, or take transit! There’s a large choice of condos for sale in Dorval, just a short distance away from central Montreal where you find the perfect balance of urban living and vibrant community amenities.
While you might not think that condos are a good fit for your lifestyle or your family, remember to appreciate them and the people who live in them. They, whether intentionally or not, are making a choice that is benefiting all of us directly thanks to the impact of the condo living on the environment.