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Doon South Area in Kitchener

It’s that time again – that time when WRX Property Group investigates another one of Kitchener-Waterloo’s neighbourhoods! Today we’ll be looking at the southern extreme of Kitchener. As you may be aware, this area, and the other southern parts of Kitchener, are undergoing rapid growth and development. So hang onto your hats, because the subject of today’s article is: Doon South! Let’s get down to business.
Owing in part to its ongoing development, and the natural terrain, Doon South is another of Kitchener’s somewhat oddly-shaped neighbourhoods. But its boundaries are more or less as follows: Doon Village Road and Tilts Bush Trail in the north, Homer Watson Boulevard and Highway 401 in the east, New Dundee Road in the south, and Reidel Drive and Carnydale Drive in the west. The vast majority of residents in Doon South are homeowners (as opposed to renters), and with safe streets, numerous schools, and detached homes with large properties, it’s a very popular place for families. Indeed, the majority of residents here are families with children, by a fairly significant margin. Because the neighbourhood is growing so quickly, there are lots of properties to choose from. You’ll almost always be able to find a home for sale that fits your needs perfectly. Prices range from around $200 000 for smaller, single bedroom houses, to over $1 million for homes with 3000+ square feet. As always, we here at WRX are here to help, so if there’s anything you’d like to know more about, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

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History

Doon was once a small village in southern Ontario, settled in the early nineteenth century by German Mennonites (like Kitchener), and later by Scottish immigrants (not like Kitchener) – the name Doon derives from Loch Doon in Scotland, a site of battles during the Scottish Wars of Independence. It was never a large settlement (by the time of Canadian Confederation, it had a population of around 200), but legend has it they had one of the finest rope factories in all the land. Today, Doon is a suburb of Kitchener, and it boasts the primary campus of Conestoga College, and the Doon Heritage Village, a living museum in which visitors can see what life in the Waterloo Region was like in the early twentieth century (they were on an earlier iPhone generation back then, but the screens were much more durable). Homer Watson, Kitchener-Waterloo’s patron painter, is from Doon – you can see his name throughout the region, and his paintings have adorned Canadian stamps. Doon South residents can also enjoy the large, beautiful Homer Watson Park, which features multiple trails, and a fine view of Schneider Creek.

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Location

Being in the south of Kitchener certainly has its perks. For one thing, Doon South residents have quick and easy access to the lovely, pastoral expanses of North Dumfries and Wilmot Townships. Another key benefit is the great access to Highway 401 (one of Southern Ontario’s most important highways, going all the way from Windsor to Cornwall and the border with Québec – about half of Canada’s population lives along this corridor). The vast majority of Kitchener-Waterloo residents can only access the 401 through Highway 8, so it is a distinct benefit that Doon South has such convenient access. Getting to Cambridge is fairly easy, too – though it will be easier when construction is finished on the Fountain Street Bridge – and getting to the rest of Kitchener, and Waterloo, is just a matter of heading north up one of the arterial roads (such as Homer Watson), or hopping on Highway 8 from the other side of the Grand River.
There is an abundance of parks in Doon South, some of which are larger than other neighbourhoods’ parks put together. Topper Woods, for example, is a sprawling, forested area with a beautiful trail running through it, and access to large, cleared fields on either side. Other lovely areas include the Pinnacle Hill Natural Area, the Doon Creek Natural Area, and Tilts Bush, which lies north of an ongoing development project. Very few neighbourhoods in Kitchener-Waterloo can compete with Doon South for its natural beauty, and perhaps none has quite as many distinct parks.
Where Doon South suffers slightly in comparison to other neighbourhoods is its shortage of shopping opportunities. There are very few shops to speak of within the neighbourhood’s boundaries, though a small shopping area near Conestoga College includes a few options (including a Tim Hortons and a McDonald’s). Doon South residents would do well to have access to a car, and there is a perfectly sufficient shopping area a few minutes north along Homer Watson, which includes a Zehrs and a Shoppers Drug Mart, so groceries should never be too much of an issue. Near this shopping area are the Pioneer Park Community Library, Doon South residents’ nearest branch of the Kitchener Public Library, and the Doon Pioneer Park Community Centre, a favourite of local families for its numerous programs for preschoolers and beyond.


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Education

There are plenty of schools in Doon South, making the neighbourhood a great place for families. Indeed, some of the schools here are among the newest in all of Kitchener-Waterloo. Schools within the neighbourhood include Brigadoon Public School, Carmel New Church School, Doon Public School, Groh Public School, and J. W. Gerth Public School. Boundaries for the public school board (WRDSB) are approximately as follows: students south of Robert Ferrie Drive and Evens Pond Crescent will attend Groh; students west of Bannockburn Road will attend Brigadoon; and students north of Ferrie Drive will attend J. W. Gerth. Each of these schools serves students from Kindergarten to Grade 6, after which they will attend Doon Public School, a senior elementary school also located in the Doon South neighbourhood. For high school, they will all attend Huron Heights, which you can learn more about in its WRX article here. Students in the Catholic board (WCDSB) are zoned for St. Kateri Tekakwitha Catholic Elementary School, north of Tilts Bush. St. Kateri Tekakwitha serves students from Kindergarten to Grade 8, and it presently has a student population of around 400. For high school, WCDSB students will attend St. Mary’s High School, which is several minutes away along Homer Watson Boulevard. For both schools, students are eligible for bus transportation.
One of Doon South’s greatest advantages is its proximity to Conestoga College. Both the Doon Campus (Conestoga’s original, and largest, campus) and the Cambridge Campus (Conestoga’s newest campus, having opened in 2011) are a few minutes northwest of Doon South. Conestoga College is growing consistently, and it offers a wide range of programs: 1, 2, 3, and 4 year options, and everything from interior design to mechanical systems engineering.


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Conclusion

Doon South is incredibly popular with families, and it’s great for anyone looking for the distinct opportunities of suburban life. With seemingly endless acres of parks and trails nearby, residents will never run out of things to do – and if they do, they can easily head over to Conestoga College and enroll for some classes. Doon South may be situated at the bottom of Kitchener, but its residents agree: it’s rising to the top.

Written by Will Kummer

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