The city has put together the vision of how Blatchford will be built out. The roads for the very first neighborhood, are mapped out to serve what will be the first 250 homes, condos and apartments, in and around the old control tower.
Bev Esslinger, the city councillor for the area is excited about the first phase of the very first sub-division. “We’ve got these in place now, so now as the district energy comes forward we’re going to be able to tell people this is what it’s going to look like. Basically where the roads are going. This is our vision.”
There will be brownstone type town homes, four storey walk up apartments as well as condos. The proposed development will also include back lane garages that will have garage suites above.
That’s been the year long hold up. A council decision in the spring to delay one year the engineering specs on the district engineering. Once city council makes the final decision next spring, the city will begin signing deals with developers and builders.
“With that in hand, we’ll be able to describe what the obligations are to a developer in terms of how to tie in to what ever the renewable energy system is,” said Mayor Don Iveson.
The one year delay on the energy system, means the first people to move in, won’t do so until the latter part of 2018. That’s a disappointment to Scott Whitlow, board chair of the Kingsway Business Association, however he understands the need to get things done correctly.
“I think there’s a lot of interest out there but there’s just be a lot of uncertainty as to when things are actually going to move forward. You can’t buy land. You can’t build a space so people are kind of in a holding pattern until there’s more forward movement of the project.”
Whitlow expects to see small boutique type businesses as opposed to chain stores, when the neighborhood begins to take shape.
Talks with the province on the build out of NAIT, continue said Iveson. The plan also calls for a larger campus and student housing. No decisions are imminent.