Ben Bartosik

July 28, 2023

Listening to one of my current favourite podcasts, the Urbanist Agenda, today and they had a really good conversation around the benefits and values of townhouses (or row houses). Its a form of housing that often gets a really bad reputation here in North America but shouldn't be overlooked.

A couple of the clear benefits they mention are:

  • Significantly less house maintenance;

  • Reduced heating costs (due to shared walls);

  • Achieve a remarkable amount of density (which leads to better walkability);

  • Can do mixed development properly and add small businesses onto the corners;

  • Great cross drafts for cooling;

  • Easily sectioned into apartments;

  • Residents still get an entire home with multiple floors.

I remember when we lived in Stouffville some of my favourite builds were a street over from me. It was a row of town houses with the garages behind them. This allowed for the entire house to be used for living (no wasted space with a garage) and also created a nice framing in of the backyard. It's a style popular in the cities but should maybe make a stronger comeback in suburbia. It's definitely time to let the detached, single family home dream die and townhouses might just be the best way forward.