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A Tale of Two Neighbourhoods: Parkwood Hills and Fisher Glen

In this post I will look at a tale of two adjacent neighbourhoods built approximately 20 years apart - Parkwood Hills and Fisher Glen. Both areas were predominantly constructed by the same builder, Minto, and they are a good example of how house design changed between the 1960s and 1980s. The two neighbourhoods are a good comparison as both areas generally have smaller to medium size houses for their time.

This post is quite long, but I wanted to share all of the plans and information I have on the two areas. In some cases I have two versions of the same plan as one may be more clear or have a different facade image.

Type of houses and layout:

Most of Minto's detached house lineup in Parkwood Hills during the early 1960s consisted of bungalows and side split designs. They are modestly sized houses, almost all with 3 bedrooms and 1 full bathroom. A few of the plans have a small 2-piece ensuite bathroom off of the master bedroom. Some plans came with garages, but carports are were more common. Later in the 1960s, larger houses were introduced to Parkwood Hills, including many with 4 bedrooms and even some 2-storey designs with a main floor family room. With this later collection of plans, nearly all have an ensuite bathroom and garage.

Construction of the Fisher Heights neighbourhood started in the early 1980s. All of the designs are at least 2-stories tall, with one 3-story plan, and there are no bungalow or side split designs. Many of the houses have 3 bedrooms, but there are a few 4 bedroom plans. All have a main floor 2-piece powder room, and most have a small ensuite bathroom off of the master bedroom, while larger designs have a full ensuite. Main floor family rooms are also found in some of the larger designs. All of the designs have at least a 1-car attached garage.

Lot sizes:

Lot sizes in early Parkwood Hills were 65-75 feet wide by about 100 feet deep. Later in the 1960s the subsequent phases had lot sizes that averaged a slightly narrower 60-65 feet wide. Almost all of the designs have the long side of the house facing the street with the carport or garage to the side.

In comparison, in Fisher Heights, lot sizes may be as narrow as 24 feet, with most being between 30-40 feet wide, and averaging 102-118 feet deep. The narrower lot sizes necessitated that the designs be 2 or 3 stories tall, as bungalow designs are tricky (although not impossible) to accommodate on such narrow lot widths. The narrow edge of the houses face the street and depending of the lot width, the garage may be located to the side of the house or protruding out front. 

Below are the designs from Parkwood Hills. The Fisher Heights plans follow after this section.

The Savoy is one of the few 4 bedroom bungalow designs by Minto at the time.

The Neptune and the Alpine are essentially the same plan, but with a different orientation to the street and a different overall architectural design.

The Kingsley and the Kent are very similar designs, with the former having a small ensuite bathroom off the master bedroom.

Similar to the Savoy, the Cavalier is a rare 4 bedroom bungalow design. 

The Fleetwood has a "California Kitchen". I am not certain what this means, but I believe it is a kitchen that is completely open to the dining room with a peninsula counter dividing the two spaces.

I believe this model may be called the Huron. It is a rare early 2-storey design in Parkwood Hills.

The floor plans below were built later in Parkwood Hills and include some larger and 2 storey designs.

The Fisher Glen Neighbourhood south of Parkwood Hills was begun in the early 1980s and has houses that are very different compared to those built just to the north about 20 years prior.

The neighbourhood has a mixture of designs with the garage to the side on wider lots, and plans with the garage out front on narrower lots.

This 3-storey design allows for it to be built on a narrow lot width, yet the garage is unobtrusive by being tucked under the main level.

This is an early example of a design with a family room located over the garage.

The next few designs are wider and larger than most in Fisher Glen. They all have 2-car garages, main floor family rooms and ensuite bathrooms. A limited number of these designs were built in the neighbourhood.

As a bonus, I wanted to include the townhouses in Fisher Glen. Of note, is that all of the plans have a 2-piece ensuite bathroom off of the master bedroom. A few of the designs also have a "cheater door" from the ensuite to a shared room with a bathtub/shower.


  1. Thank you for this post! With your help I was able to find out my home is a Lynbrook, and not a Hudson as initially thought. I also found it interesting how much prices increased (from about 90,000 to 130,000 for same model over only a couple of years) even though interest rates did not drastically change. Do you know if this was a local or national phenomenon in the early 80s? Thanks again for all your great posts!

    1. You are welcome! House prices in Ottawa did drastically increase during the early/mid 1980s...but I am not sure if this was a national phenomenon.



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