Supporting Edmonton’s Mature Neighbourhoods Through Change

All communities progress through life cycles, where the population changes and character evolves. This natural evolution presents an opportunity to rejuvenate mature and established neighbourhoods to support balanced, sustainable communities that better meet the needs of the people who live there.

Edmonton’s Mature Neighbourhood Overlay (MNO) helps ensure that rejuvenation happens in a thoughtful way that supports the unique features of each neighborhood.

So what is the Mature Neighbourhood Overlay (MNO) anyway?

MatureNeighbourhoods (1)Created in 2001, the MNO is a part of the Zoning Bylaw that applies to mature and established neighbourhoods. It was created to address concerns that new, suburban-style homes being built in mature neighbourhoods did not fit with the existing dynamic of these communities.  

These new homes often included features such as front attached garages and were built to the maximum allowable height and lot coverage of the zone. These features were seen at odds with the existing development of older communities, which feature streets with tree-lined boulevards, lanes, rear detached garages, and lower building heights.

The current MNO contains 24 regulations which add to or override the rules of the underlying zones, helping integrate new development in a way that supports the unique features that make our mature neighbourhoods special. These regulations include:

  • limiting building height and massing so new developments don’t crowd out their neighbours;
  • staggering windows on new homes to consider neighbours’ privacy;
  • positioning buildings at specific places on their lots to increase consistency of front and backyards; and
  • protecting the beautiful boulevard tree and pedestrian friendly design of mature neighbourhoods by ensuring garages are accessed from a rear lane so sidewalks are uninterrupted by driveways.

After 15 years and a recent influx of new development in our mature neighbourhoods, it’s time to make sure the MNO is continuing to meet our city’s needs.

The MNO review is action 17 on Edmonton’s Infill Roadmap, the City’s two-year work plan for advancing infill in Edmonton. The intent of the review is to make infill in mature areas easier and better for communities, developers, and Administration through improved regulations.

We want to hear your thoughts on how new development can be welcomed into our mature and established communities without losing the qualities that make each community special and unique. For more information on the MNO review and how to get involved, visit

This video and blog post is the second in our five-part Mature Neighbourhood Overlay (MNO) series. The series showcases the role zoning and the MNO play in shaping Edmonton’s mature neighbourhoods.