Why Downtown?

Downtown: The Driving Force for Winnipeg’s Growth

From Portage and Main and from communities across Canada to our neighbours worldwide – people are taking note of the exciting progress occurring in our downtown.

While we all strive to create a more liveable city – one with a better built environment, increased cultural amenities, a thriving economy, improved social well-being and feelings of safety, and sustainability for the many generations to come – it is our undeniable love for Winnipeg and the heart of our city that continues to drive development forward. That sense of community pride and optimism beats in the heart of downtown Winnipeg, in every one of the tens of thousands of students, office workers, residents, and tourists who frequent this bustling part of the city daily.

Fact:16KWinnipeggers living in the downtown area

  • 15 LEED certified buildings (or awaiting LEED certification)
  • 30 BOMA BEST/Green Globes certified buildings
  • 861 postal codes in the downtown
  • 210 free WIFI locations, with dozens more currently being installed
  • Over 324, 000 Twitter followers of downtown agencies
  • More than 69,000 people come downtown to work everyday
  • More than 24,000 students come downtown to learn every year
  • Almost 16,000 people live downtown
  • 1,812 housing units have been constructed since 2005, with 1719 more planned
  • More than 2.8 million out-of-town tourists visit Winnipeg each year
  • An estimated $647 million is spent by tourists in Winnipeg each year
  • An estimated 308,000 people attended nearly 655 events/conventions in Winnipeg in 2012. An estimated 404,000 will attend 743 events/conventions when the Convention Centre is expanded
  • There are 4 million annual visits to The Forks, which was named Best Public Space in Canada (Canadian Institute of Planners)
  • There are about 1.5 million annual visits to the Millennium Library
  • There are 1 million annual visits to the MTS Centre, the 13th busiest venue in North America
  • More than 2 billion has been invested downtown since 2005
  • More than 950,000 people attended downtown events every year
  • Over 4,000,000 people visit downtown arts and entertainment venues every year, with an additional 4 million attending The Forks
  • 20% of creative industries are located downtown (670 businesses in total). Creative industries [1] employ over 25,000 people citywide, attract 1.1 million tourists and spend $87 million annually
  • 18 major public art installations, adding over $1.8 million of investment downtown
  • Cycling is up 60% in Winnipeg since 2009, and an estimated 6,200 people commute downtown by bicycle
  • Walk Score is a website that rates over 10,000 neighbourhoods in almost 3,000 cities with respect to their access to public transit, commuting time, and proximity to people and places. We looked at 3-4 downtown neighbourhoods and they scored between 88-98 out of 100 for walkability. [2]
  • There’s 440,000 m2 of downtown green space

[1] The arts and creative industries are made up of arts and cultural organizations, which we define as non-profit entities engaged in artistic activities, and creative industries, which include private firms whose business relates to arts and culture. The Ticket to the Future report employs a definition of the arts and creative industries based on the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS).
[2] www.walkscore.com