Flourish Glossary

Table of Contents


Active Transportation

Human-powered travel, including but not limited to, walking, cycling, in-line skating, and travel with the use of mobility aids, including motorized wheelchairs and other power-assisted devices moving at a comparable speed.

Affordable Housing


Rental or ownership housing that is modest in form and specification and capable of being produced for moderate-income households without upfront or ongoing direct government subsidies.


Housing that is funded, created, and operated through direct government subsidies and includes different categories of housing based on client needs.

Agricultural Impact Assessment

An assessment to determine if a development proposal will adversely affect existing and future agricultural activities on-site and in the surrounding area. The assessment describes the proposed development, the on-site and surrounding land uses, and the physical and socio-economic components of the agricultural resource bases; identifies the direct and indirect impacts of the proposed development on existing agricultural operations and on the flexibility of the area to support different types of agriculture; considers mitigation measures for reducing adverse impacts;  considers  compensation, such as the provision of agricultural protection easements; and makes recommendations in that regard. The assessment also considers the cumulative effects of other potential development.

Area Redevelopment Plan

A statutory plan, adopted by a municipality by bylaw in accordance with the Municipal Government Act, that provides a framework for the future redevelopment of a defined area of land.

Area Structure Plan

A statutory plan, adopted by a municipality by bylaw in accordance with the Municipal Government Act, that provides a framework for the subsequent subdivision and development of a defined area of land.

Automated Vehicles

Vehicles that navigate through and respond to their operating environments with little to no human input.


The different types of life found on Earth, and the variety of organisms present in different ecosystems.

Biophysical Impact Assessment

An assessment and evaluation of biological and physical elements for the purpose of reducing potential impacts of a proposed development on the natural environment.


Undeveloped or previously developed properties that are contaminated. Brownfield sites are usually former industrial or commercial properties that may be underutilized, vacant, or abandoned. The expansion and redevelopment of brownfield sites may involve the remediation of hazardous or contaminated substances or pollutants.

Building Types

  • Low-Rise: Buildings of 1-4 storeys.
  • Mid-Rise: Buildings of 5-9 storeys.
  • High-Rise: Buildings of 10 storeys or more

Built-up Urban Area

All lands located within the limits of the developed urban area, with plans of subdivision registered prior to December 31, 2016, or as shown on Map 2 or both.


City, when capitalized, means the City of St. Albert, corporately as a municipal government. City, when not capitalized, means the geographic area of the City of St. Albert.

City Tree

A tree located on municipally-owned lands, including but not limited to, trees located within the right-of-way, parks, and other open spaces.

Climate Adaptation

Lowering the risks and negative impacts and embracing potential opportunities associated with climate change in an effort to prepare and adapt to new climate conditions.

Climate Change

A long-term change in the statistical distribution of weather patterns over periods of time that range from decades to millions of years. It may be a change in the average weather conditions or a change in the distribution of weather events with respect to an average, for example, greater or fewer extreme weather events.

Climate Mitigation

Actions taken to moderate potential harm or take advantage of opportunities anticipated from current or expected climate change impacts, including extreme events. Actions could include making physical modifications to buildings, equipment, materials, or services, or be less tangible, such as updating climate-related plans, policies, bylaws, and organizational structures.

Community Facilities

Facilities operated by or on behalf of a public authority for the provision of community services, such as, but not limited to, recreation, libraries, arts, culture, museums, galleries, and social programs.

Complete Community

Includes housing suitable for all ages and income levels, provides residents with easy access to jobs, local amenities, services, community facilities, and multi-modal transportation.

Complete Streets

Roads designed, built, and operated to enable safe, attractive, and comfortable access and travel for all users, including pedestrians, cyclists, public transit users, and private vehicle users.


The directness of links and the density of connections in a path or road network. A connected transportation system allows for more direct travel between destinations, offers more route options, and makes active transportation more feasible.

Conservation Reserve

Land provided by the developer as part of a subdivision with compensation for conservation purposes, in accordance with the provisions of the Municipal Government Act.


Refers in Flourish to number of units per net hectare. Notwithstanding, Flourish refers to density to indicate the types of housing typically associated with different levels of density as per below.

  • Low-Density: Detached, semi-detached, and duplex housing.
  • Medium Density: Triplexes, townhouses, stacked townhouses, row housing, and apartment buildings less than five storeys.
  • High-Density: Apartment buildings greater than four storeys.


A change of use of land or a building; the construction of a building; an extraction or stockpile; or change in intensity of use, as defined in the Municipal Government Act.

District Energy

A system that ties together distributed thermal energy generation and users through a local supply loop.


The heart of the city, where an increasing number of people live and work, and that is the primary destination for culture, specialty retail, entertainment, and government services, as shown on Map 3.

Ecological Network

A coherent system of natural and semi-natural landscape elements.


A biological environment consisting of all the organisms living in a particular area, as well as all the non-living, physical components of the environment with which the organisms interact, such as air, soil, water, and sunlight.

Edmonton Metropolitan Region

A geographic area, as defined by the Edmonton Metropolitan Region Board Regulation to include its members.

Edmonton Metropolitan Region Growth Plan

Under the authority of the Municipal Government Act, the Edmonton Metropolitan Region Growth Plan was prepared by the Edmonton Metropolitan Region Board and approved by the Minister of
Municipal Affairs in October 2017, as amended. The plan provides direction regarding growth, community planning, infrastructure, and economic development.

Employment Areas

Dedicated locations for a variety of industrial and office-based businesses that benefit from convenient access to the regional transportation network, as shown on Map 3.

Environmental Reserve

Lands dedicated to the municipality for the protection and enhancement of the environment.

Environmental Reserve Easement

An easement registered on the title of a parcel of land in favour of the municipality to protect and enhance the environment.

First and Last Mile

The opportunities for getting people to and from transit stations, mobility hubs, and fixed-route transit services without the use of a private vehicle. Alternatives to travelling by car are supported by improved sidewalks and cycling infrastructure and include walking, cycling, car sharing, bike sharing, shuttle buses, taxis, and on-demand services.

Flood Fringe

The portion of the flood hazard area outside the floodway. Water in the flood fringe is generally shallower and flows more slowly than in the floodway.


The portion of the flood hazard area where flows are deepest, fastest, and most destructive. The floodway typically includes the main channel of a stream and a portion of the adjacent overbank area.

Food Security

Availability of and access to food of sufficient quantity and quality to meet the nutritional needs of a healthy and active life.

Goods Movement

The transportation of goods (freight or commodities) by road, rail, or other means.

Green Development Standards

Sustainable and environmental practices, design elements, and functions that are incorporated into development and building projects, including, but not limited to, Low Impact Development stormwater practices, landscape materials, pedestrian and cyclist infrastructure, exterior building materials, and Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards.

Greenfield Development

Land that has not previously been developed to urban density levels or utilized for more intensive purposes other than agricultural production. This term is typically used to denote new development areas for residential, commercial, industrial, institutional, or mixed-use areas that were previously agricultural or natural lands.

Greenhouse Gas(es)

A gas in an atmosphere that absorbs and emits radiation within the thermal infrared range. The primary greenhouse gases in Earth’s atmosphere are water vapour, carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, and ozone.

Historic Resource(s)

A structure, building, group of buildings, district, landscape, archaeological site, or other place that has been formally recognized by the City, provincial and/or federal government for its heritage value.


Temporary fencing which is installed prior to construction to preserve and protect trees during construction.


An inclusive term that represents three distinct groups of people: First Nations, Métis, and Inuit.


The development of vacant lots within previously developed areas. (See Redevelopment.)


New development at a higher density than currently exists within an area or site, through redevelopment; the development of underutilized lots within previously developed areas; infill development; or the expansion or conversion of existing buildings. (See Infill and Redevelopment.)

Intensification Target

An aspirational target for residential growth in a built-up area. Intensification targets are measured as the percentage of new residential dwellings constructed within the built-up urban area each year.

Land use Amendment

A change to the Land Use Bylaw that requires council approval, which can include, but is not limited to, a mapping amendment or development regulation amendment.

Large Format Retail

Large, floor-plate, single-storey retail areas located on individual sites or clustered on larger sites. They typically operate as part of a chain retail business.

Low Impact Development (LID)

A planning and engineering approach for managing stormwater runoff. LID emphasizes conservation and using on-site natural features to protect water quality. This approach implements engineered, small-scale hydrologic controls that replicate the predevelopment hydrologic regime of watersheds through infiltrating, storing, evaporating, and detaining runoff close to its source.

Major Open Spaces

The Sturgeon River and Carrot Creek corridors and lands around Big Lake, including Natural Features and parkland to be protected and enhanced as the city grows, as shown on Map 3.

Minimum Greenfield Density

The required minimum residential density for greenfield areas planned and approved under the Edmonton Metropolitan Region Growth Plan, measured as average dwelling unit per net residential hectare within an Area Structure Plan.


Development that mixes compatible residential, commercial, institutional, and recreational land uses within or close to buildings in order to increase density, reduce the developmental footprint, and improve public accessibility to amenities.

Mixed-use Employment Areas

Locations for the clustering of related light industrial, office, and retail businesses, as shown on Map 3.

Mixed-use Nodes

Areas within new Neighbourhoods that contain a range of commercial uses, apartment buildings, townhouses, and community services, all arranged within a cohesive, pedestrian-oriented network of streets and open spaces, as shown on Map 3.

Multi-modal Level of Service

The speed, convenience, comfort, and security of transportation facilities and services as experienced by users.

Municipal Development Plan (MDP)

A long-range, statutory planning document that is adopted by bylaw by every municipality in Alberta. An MDP communicates the long-term desired land use for a community and serves as a high-level blueprint showing how a community is expected to evolve over time.

Municipal Government Act

Provincial legislation that empowers municipalities to govern, raise revenue, and plan for development.

Municipal Reserve

Land provided by the developer as part of a subdivision for park and school purposes without compensation, in accordance with the provisions of the Municipal Government Act.

Natural Features

Include Significant Natural Areas, Environmentally Sensitive Areas, and Natural Areas, as defined in the City of St. Albert Natural Areas Assessment, as shown on Map 5.


An alternative landscape management technique. Natural processes of growth and change are less restricted, for example, by restricting mowing and by planting native vegetation found locally on similar landscapes near the City of St. Albert. As a result, the landscape becomes more natural than ornamental.

Net Zero

A building or system that generates as much energy as it uses from on-site renewable sources.

Net Zero Energy Ready (NZER) Codes

Action to develop a building code that when adopted nationally and used by builders can enable all new buildings to be built “net-zero energy ready.” NZER buildings are designed, modelled, and constructed to be highly efficient and have the ability to reach net-zero energy.


Predominantly residential areas, as identified on Map 3, made up of lowrise housing, along with schools, parks, shops, and services. Many existing Neighbourhoods will evolve by adding new housing that respects the established character, while new Neighbourhoods will include a greater variety of housing types.

Non-statutory Plan

Plans that are not approved through a bylaw of City Council. Such plans include complementary plans, guidelines, strategies, and suborder plans.

Open Space

Space owned and maintained by a public agency and dedicated for the common use and enjoyment of the public. This could include open green spaces, parks, or public squares, and may include stormwater ponds or systems.

Park-and-Ride Facility

A parking facility located at the terminus of the planned rapid transit line on St. Albert Trail.


A collaborative process of strengthening the connection between people and places by shaping the public realm in a way that maximizes shared value.

Primary Mobility Corridors

St. Albert Trail and identified east-west roads, as shown on Map 3, that will be improved over time to facilitate access to and encourage use of public transit, cycling, and walking, while continuing to accommodate private vehicles.

Public Art

Public art may include any original work of art accessible to the general public, including permanent installations, community-based participatory works, temporary works, multi-media based projects, or residencies, in accordance with the City’s Public Art Policy.

Public Realm

Public spaces such as public streets and rights-of-way, urban squares, parks, community trails, and open spaces.

Public Utility Lot

A lot owned by the municipality that is designated as a Utility Lot with the Land Titles Office and accommodates one or more public utilities.


The creation of new units, uses, or lots on previously developed land, including brownfield sites. (See Infill and Intensification.)

Renewable Energy

Energy that comes from resources that are naturally replenished during a human timescale.

Secondary Suites

A self-contained dwelling unit that includes a kitchen, bathroom, living area, and sleeping area, but that is incorporated as a secondary use within an existing structure that was originally designed as a single dwelling unit.

Statutory Plan

A plan adopted by a municipality by bylaw in accordance with the Municipal Government Act, including Municipal Development Plans, Area Structure Plans, and Area Redevelopment Plans.

Stormwater Management Facility

Infrastructure that is designed and utilized to gather rainfall and surface water runoff to reduce the possibility of flooding and property damage. This can include stormwater ponds, dry ponds, and other open spaces.


The physical elements that make up a street and that influence the user’s experience of the street. These elements include, but are not limited to, sidewalks, building setbacks, landscaping, street furniture, lighting, cycling infrastructure, and public art.

Subdivision Authority

The body or person(s) granted, by City Council through bylaw, the authority to make decisions about subdivisions on behalf of the municipality.


To meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.

Trail Corridor Areas

Lands along St. Albert Trail that are currently dominated by commercial uses but will be encouraged over time to also accommodate residential uses (mostly apartment buildings but also townhouse developments) and office buildings, as shown on Map 3.

Transit-oriented Development (TOD)

Compact, mixed-use development with high levels of employment or residential density, or both, to support higher order transit service, optimize transit investment, and make development more accessible for transit users. Features typically include an interconnected road network, pedestrian-friendly built form along roads, reduced setbacks, parking at the sides or rears of buildings, and improved access between connector roads and interior blocks in residential areas.

Transportation Impact Assessment (TIA)

A study that estimates and assesses the effects of proposed development and redevelopment on the transportation network. The study identifies infrastructure needs to ensure that the transportation network maintains an acceptable level of service, is well connected and safe for all modes of travel, and supports the long-term needs of the community. A TIA can include an Access and Circulation Plan, as required by the City.

Universally Accessible Design

The design and structure of an environment that ensures it can be understood, accessed, and used to the greatest extent possible by all people, regardless of age or ability.

Urban Agriculture

The practice of cultivating food in an urban area. This may include, but is not limited to, urban farming, roof-top gardens, hens, honeybees, and community gardens.

Urban Forest

The collection of trees located within city limits, whether planted or naturally occurring, located on both City and private property.


A measure of how useful, safe, comfortable, and interesting an area is for walking.


A material, substance, or by-product that is unusable or unwanted, such as garbage, organics, recycling, and hazardous waste.

Related Pages

Last edited: September 20, 2021