Measuring community engagement: A case study of Livingston (Calgary, Alberta)
Sheehan, Dwayne P.
Ammar, Diala F.
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This case study focuses on developing an objective, baseline understanding of the opinions and behaviours of residents currently residing in the developing neighborhood of Livingston (Calgary, Alberta, Canada). Livingston is unique because it is a new community composed of mostly young couples from diverse backgrounds who have collectively chosen to be part of a community focused developing neighborhood. More specifically, researchers from Mount Royal University (MRU) explored the sense of belonging, physical activity behaviors, and level of engagement of the pioneer residents (first families who opted to move in to this brand-new community). This baseline knowledge can be used by the developer (Brookfield Residential) and local recreation leaders (such as Vivo for Healthier Generations and City of Calgary Recreation) to understand the current and anticipated expectations of residents living in Livingston, including opportunities for active and healthy living. Discoveries from this study can also provide evidence to help inform future planning and decision making related to the built environment and vibrancy within a community as it is being built. A combination of semi-structured interviews with families living in Livingston along with personalized physical activity (PA) behaviour assessments and validated questionnaires for both children and adults living in Livingston were used. Several themes emerged from the data analysis including (but not limited to); neighborhood vibrancy, environmental appeal, health and happiness, harmonious living, belonging, and infrastructure.