Score Details

The GoodScore.City prototype provides a visual picture and scoring for neighbourhoods in communities across the country. This ‘beta’ version currently does so for five characteristics:

  • the number of local amenities (sometimes called land use diversity)
  • the number of recreation opportunities
  • the number of transit options,
  • “green” streets – urban streets with trees and green vegetation, and
  • air quality.

To compare the quality of these different characteristics, we have converted the values in each dataset to a scale of 1 to 100, divided the scale into 10 categories, and assigned a score to each. This means that for each dataset, the highest 10% of the values across Canada get a score of 95, while the lowest 10% get a score of 5, and so on.

You can see the score for any characteristic in any urban location in Canada. When you turn on more than one characteristic, the average score is displayed.

Over the next three years, we will be enhancing GoodScore.City – adding data for more characteristics, developing new functions, and creating custom report options.

Local Amenities

The local amenities score is based on spatial data from Open Street Map. All sites in Canada listed as libraries, town halls, community centres, arts centres, theatres, religious centres and cemeteries, monuments, art galleries, zoos, market places, kiosks, malls, department stores, clothing stores, florists, bookshops, shoe stores, jewellers, gift shops, sports and outdoors shops, stationery stores, toy stores, computer and phone stores, news stores, video shops, car dealerships, bicycle shops, home hardware stores, furniture stores and garden centres were downloaded and added to our GIS. We count the total number of sites within 1 kilometer, for every location on a 100m grid within urban areas.

Example: all amenities-related points within 1 kilometer of a location are counted and assigned to that location, and the count is converted to a standard score.

Recreation and Parks

The recreation and parks score is based on spatial data from Open Street Map. All sites in Canada listed as playgrounds, dog parks, sports centres, public swimming pools, tennis courts, gold courses, stadiums, ice rinks, bicycle rental stores, picnic sites, benches, drinking water fountains and public washrooms were downloaded and added to our GIS. All polygons coded as parks, recreation grounds, nature reserves, or forest within urban areas were also downloaded, added to the GIS and converted into 100m pixels.  We counted the total number of recreation-related sites and the total park pixels within 1 kilometer, for every location on a 100m grid within urban areas.

Example: all recreation-related points and park area pixels within 1 kilometer of a location are counted and assigned to that location, and the count is converted to a standard score.

Transit Options

The transit options score is based on spatial data from Open Street Map. All sites in Canada listed as car sharing, bicycle parking, railway stations and stops, bus stations and stops, tram stops, and taxi stands were downloaded and added to our GIS. We counted the total number of transit-related sites within 1 kilometer, for every location on a 100m grid within urban areas.

Example: all transit-related points within 1 kilometer of a location are counted and assigned to that location, and the count is converted to a standard score.

Green Streets

The green streets score measures the length of  urban roads with nearby trees or green vegetation. The score is based on a combination of spatial data from Open Street Map and the LandSat satellite program. All major and local roads in Canada within urban areas were downloaded from Open Street Map and added to our GIS. The annual average normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) from Landsat was downloaded from Google Earth Engine at 3o meter resolution for all of Canada. We selected all LandSat NDVI pixels with a value above 0.3 (indicating green vegetation) that were along all major and local roads, and counted how many pixels were within 1 kilometer, for every location on a 100m grid in urban areas.

Example: all pixels (represented by green points) within 1 kilometer of a location are counted and assigned to that location, and the count is converted to a standard score.

Air Quality

The air quality score is based on the estimated annual average concentration of nitrogen dioxide, an air pollutant that comes mostly from the exhaust of cars, trucks and buses. These data come from academic researchers with expertise in modelling air pollution in Canada.

The estimated level of nitrogen dioxide within 250 meters had been assigned to every location on a 100m grid within urban areas.

Example: the estimated annual average nitrogen dioxide level is assigned to each location, and converted to a standard score.