A local developer is proposing to diversify the housing options available in the Hart by constructing a trio of rental apartment buildings.
Located on a 17-acre site at Sparwood and Chief Lake Road, the Sparwood Landing Project would see three 43-unit apartment buildings constructed, featuring one-, two- and three-bedroom suites.
The developer, Bruce Kidd of Kidd Real Estate Holdings Ltd., tells PrinceGeorgeMatters there’s a huge demand for secondary-suites and apartment-style dwellings in the Hart.
“Some of the houses we are already building typically include an entry-level house with a one- or a two-bedroom secondary suite, and the people we are selling to aren’t having any problems renting them. In some cases, they are getting 50 requests in a day or two of listing.”
Kidd says there hasn’t been any new apartment buildings constructed in the Hart for roughly 30 to 40 years.
Each would include an electric fireplace, air conditioning and in-suite laundry. There would also be an elevator in each building, as well as an amenity lounge.
Kidd says the outdoor grounds may include not only covered parking, but a community garden, walking berm connected to trails a skating rink and an off-leash dog park.
“By reducing the footprint into three buildings it allows us to have way more greenspace that we would get if we did townhouses or residential houses,” says Kidd.
“Our intention is to build the infrastructure for some of these amenities and maybe there would be a volunteer group that would look after the ice rink and the community garden.”
Kidd says the company has just completed a self-led consultation process with the community to gather feedback on the proposal.
"We wanted to bring it to city council with a plan already so we did the landscaping design, we did the architectural design and how it would look on the property, and we wanted to go outside and get all the neighbours feedback, so if there was something we needed to change we could change it before we went to council."
The buildings will be marketed to a wide demographic including young families, but Kidd says he’s heard a lot of positive feedback from seniors during the consultation.
“There’s a lot of seniors that would like a complex like this. They don’t necessarily want to shovel snow but they want to be in the Hart close to their family but there’s nothing that’s available,” says Kidd.
“People that typically live or grew up in the Hart want to stay in the Hart, for a number of reasons, and this allows ageing in place so they can continue to stay.”
Kidd says the three phases of Sparwood Landing would be a near $23-million project.
“Those jobs are going to stay in the Hart, those supplies are going to be bought from Prince George and I think anytime you can keep another development in the Hart is good for the Hart,” says Kidd, noting there hasn’t been as much development in the Hart as in other areas of Prince George because the infrastructure can’t sustain it.
“The more development we are going to have the more services we are going to get,” he adds.
The project is still in its early phases and will come to city council for first and second reading in the coming months.
Kidd says if Sparwood Landing makes it through the city council process he hopes to have the design phase completed by the end of 2021, infrastructure work started in 2022 and have the project completed by 2023.