Ajax, Whitby, Pickering neighbourhoods ranked best in Durham for families


Published March 2, 2023 at 2:25 pm

Pickering Village in Ajax

An eclectic group of neighbourhoods in Ajax, Whitby and Pickering earned high rankings for raising children, from young kids to teenagers, in an interactive ranking developed by a Toronto digital real estate company of the best neighbourhoods in the GTA by region.

The results for the two demographics were widely different, with parents with young children desiring quieter residential neighbourhoods, while parents looking for neighbourhoods terrific for teens needed to be closer to downtown where the action is.

Wahi, which released the Where to Live 2023 report this week, ranked neighbourhood vs neighbourhood in 11 lifestyle categories and based their findings in the teen category on the proximity to nearby high schools and parks as well as shopping; and the cycling and pedestrian friendliness of the area.

At number one? Uptown Ajax, where the community has an arts and music scene that will keep teens entertained all-year round. Uptown Ajax has a downtown vibe with its pool halls, patios and outdoor music festivals. It has two local high schools and is close to an expanse of parkland.

The unique community of Pickering Village on the Ajax/Pickering border also scored high. This historical hamlet has all the amenities of a modern community, which makes it a great choice for families with teens.

Coming in third in the study was the Pickering neighbourhood of Liverpool. Close to Pickering Town Centre, this neighbourhood is complete with tennis clubs and a rec complex for swimming, hockey and racquet sports.

The best neighbourhoods fit for a family in Durham tell a different story, with the communities ranked according to the distance to elementary schools, the amount of park space, access to amenities like grocery stores and how quiet the neighbourhood is.

Amberlea in Pickering, which also scored top marks for active living in the study, came out at #1 for young children based on its parkland, forested areas and affordable real estate. Amberlea has five primary schools and is only 30 minutes from Toronto.

Blue Grass Creek in Whitby came in second for its access to activities and programs all over town, while nearby Rolling Acres placed third in the study. Rolling Acres is home to numerous parks and green spaces for families to enjoy and boasts many local restaurants and recreation centres.

In a separate study, real estate company Zoocasa developed a school search tool that enables customers to rank school districts by exploring listings by school boundaries, covering elementary and secondary schools under both public and Catholic school boards.

Coming in at #1 in Durham Region?

The booming north Oshawa neighbourhood of Taunton, which was praised for its location abutting rural countryside on its northern boundary, its relationship with the arts community, the number of elegant, upscale homes and the three highly ranked schools – including Maxwell Heights, the city’s newest high school.

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