We’re thrilled to welcome University District’s Customer Experience team. Offering you the latest and greatest on all things happening around the community, they are excited to welcome you to the Discovery Centre to explore, learn and get to know your newest neighbors. This week we spoke to Gina, University District's Customer Experience Lead.
Thanks, it's great to be here! My name is Gina and I'm University District's Customer Experience Lead.
My background is marketing based. Like many Calgarians, I came from the energy sector, but discovered my love for community building within a hostess role with another homebuilder here in Calgary. There I realized how much I loved being in a position that allowed me to welcome others into new homes and with new neighbors. The opportunities for interaction, building connections and storytelling around the community were exactly what I was searching for.
Living in Calgary, I heard about University District through the grapevine. I was curious to see an initiative like this coming to the Northwest. When I found that University District was looking to create a team to educate visitors on the community and everything it would stand for, I was thrilled. I’m excited to be part of it.
What makes U/D memorable to you as a community? How do you describe the look and feel of it to newcomers, whether they’re prospective residents or neighbours?
Its uniqueness includes a number of things.
The physical location is different, as U/D is built upon endowment lands owned by the University of Calgary — building on endowment lands is pretty rare in Canada and only seen in a few other instances. The endowment lands and U/D surrounding area itself is a beautiful example of Alberta’s nature. What I find wonderful about U/D’s location beyond the landscape is the history of the Northwest where it’s been built. The legacy of the older neighbourhoods like Montgomery, Varsity and University Heights is ingrained in the community, with many neighbourhoods being about as old as the city itself. The U/D presence here, among these older neighbourhoods as a community of innovation is an exciting contrast. I think it proves that both the old and the new can coexist and compliement each other.
Further, the Trust’s commitment to the environmental footprint and sustainability is incredible. As a mixed-use, multi-family development, U/D is actively trying to make efficient use of land in the city. From integrated pathway networks to recycled materials and water collection in the community, the approach incorporates a ton of great features.
What are you most excited about with respect to U/D programming and facilities?
The fact that U/D offers something for everyone is only part of the reason why I find it so special.
Last fall, we hosted Circle The Wagons, and it was a wonderful way to build excitement and start the conversation around what was going to be coming next for U/D. Recently we celebrated the opening of the Discovery Centre — a huge milestone as the first meeting place for anyone visiting U/D. Both events set the tone for what U/D living will be like: inclusive, curious and fun. It’s exciting to plan for the next big event that Calgarians can enjoy.
We’re also looking forward to collaborating with our neighbours. Among them are organizations like Ronald McDonald House, University of Calgary and The Alberta Children’s Hospital. It’s an honor to share this neighborhood and to find local initiatives to enhance our community and represent U/D.
What makes U/D a community worth exploring?
Walkability is a huge part of U/D. We’re invested in making this community commuter friendly to reduce vehicle dependence and environmental impact, and encourage physical movement. The huge network of pathways being created within the community creates opportunities like walking to work. Proximity is one of U/D’s benefits, with a future-forward outlook for a city that relies on cars. With the opening of the Discovery Centre, the Customer Experience team is ready to welcome people in and explain benefits like this.
What are some best ways to take advantage of amenities that U/D has to offer?
Follow us on social media if you aren’t already. U/D always updates news about upcoming events and the best things to check out. It’s an easy way to stay in touch, as is our newsletter.
Come and visit us too. We can grab a coffee and chat to learn more, or have a look around. Many neighbors are curious, and that curiosity often leads people to the Discovery Centre so it’s a great place to connect with others. We’d like everyone to know that they’re always welcome, and we’re happy to have you in the community.
Stay tuned to meet our other U/D Customer Experience Team!